Moroto District Officials Embark on Massive Back to School Drive

Authorities in Moroto district have embarked on a campaign to ensure that all children return to school when the academic year opens next month.

The district officials have started with community sensitisation about the value of education as a way of encouraging parents to take their children to school. The campaign, supported by Welthunger and UNICEF is targeting both parents and children, mainly in remote areas where pastoralism and mining activities take precedence.

Moroto Resident District Commissioner George William Wopuwa told URN that they have agreed with the District Executive Committee to move to the communities to mobilize parents and children to prepare for the first term of school which opens on February 6, and ensure that they stay in school.

He said that the teams are targeting areas with mining sites, cattle kraals and those who are hawking around town, and would like to ensure that all children go back to school.

Moroto District Education Officer Paul Oputa says that his office has organized special training for teachers to refresh and prepare to receive learners for the new academic year. Oputa added that they have also instructed head teachers to report back to their respective schools to monitor the student registration exercise.

He explained that they have always tried their best to ensure that children stay in school but their effort is frustrated by the parents who still have a negative attitude towards education. Oputa is however optimistic that there will be a high enrollment of learners this time around because of the new strategies they are putting in place to increase access to quality education.

Meanwhile, in Kotido district, the Elders have taken charge of the drive to mobilise and encourage children to go back to school. John Bosco Akore, the Secretary of the Kotido Elders Council said they have established an education committee from each clan that will be responsible for mobilizing children to go back to school. district.

Akore said the committee shall also be responsible for moving around the villages and kraals to ensure that no child is involved in pastoral activities. He adds that parents will also be punished for keeping their children at home.

Akore noted that boys are now confined in kraals and being trained on raiding skills while the girls are married off at an early age, a practice they are strongly coming out to denounce.

‘’We have discovered that when the children are allowed to associate with warriors, they grow up with the same mindset of living bush life and raiding as the only alternatives for survival. We want to change that mindset,’’ Akore said.

He is optimistic that schools would cut the connection between warriors and the young generation which may be groomed and recruited into wrong acts.

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