Learners, teachers anxious as classrooms develop cracks in West Pokot

Kapenguria MP Samuel Moroto. He visited Holy Trinity Serewo Secondary School on Sunday. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

Fear has gripped learners and teachers at Holy Trinity Serewo Secondary School in West Pokot County after four classrooms developed cracks and started sinking.

The students have been attending lessons in dilapidated buildings.

Heavy rains pounding most parts of the county and poor drainage are believed to have damaged the classrooms.

The affected block has a leaking roof and cracked walls which pose danger to 434 learners and teachers.

The school principal Gladys Andiema, said the buildings developed cracks and some materials started falling off, causing panic among the learners.

"I have raised the matter with higher authorities and we shall have classes after moving students out of the affected classrooms. Our library and a section of classrooms have become a risk," she said.

“Our school has achieved many feats at county-level competitions and we are trying to put in efforts to teach the students, however, most of the learners often express fear about the safety of the buildings,” said a teacher at the school.

Ms Andiema said they have been forced to move learners to safe classrooms.

“The buildings are almost falling on students. We have informed the local Education office and they are assessing the situation. Once we get a report, we will send it to the higher authorities," she said. 

Kapenguria MP Samuel Moroto who visited the school on Sunday said an expert should be invited to inspect the cracks and determine if they pose a risk to learners.

Moroto wants engineers from the Ministry of Housing to start building the classrooms afresh. “The classrooms need to be brought down and be constructed afresh,” said the legislator.

He said they have identified dilapidated buildings and asked relevant authorities to demolish them and construct new ones.

The school Board of Management chairman Obadia Mnangat Katula said there is a need for partners to intervene. 

"As parents, we are very worried, because cracks in the school walls are widening. It poses risks,” he said.