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School CP - June 2004

Corpun file 13531

Kenya Times, Nairobi, 1 June 2004

Tension grips school after stand off

By Juma Aluoch

TENSION has gripped a leading Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) sponsored girls school in Rachuonyo District following a stand off between the school headmistress and the teaching staff over alleged intimidation and high-handedness.

The development has seen Nyabola Girls Secondary School experience a high exodus of students who have opted to seek admission in other schools.

In a letter dated April 16, 2004 to the Education Director, Kenya Lake Field and copied to church leaders, the teachers allege that the high exodus of students from the school was as a result of gross misconduct by the headmistress to the parents and local leaders.

At the same time, leaders from Rachuonyo District have called for investigation into the school’s continued dismal performance in which no student had qualified for university in the last 20 years.

The leaders claimed that despite having a strong spiritual background, the school is noted for caning of which the headmistress is a major culprit.

They cited last week’s incident where a Form Two orphaned student, Josephine Oketch, who is sponsored by Adventist Development Relief Agency (ADRA) was caned by the headmistress for lateness.

The teachers claimed that the headmistress had assigned a non professional who is the school accountant to act as their supervisor.

The said accountant, added the teachers, has allegedly formed a syndicate with the headmistress in which funds disappear.

Rachuonyo District Education Officer Mrs Celine Owuor said she would despatch inspectors to the school to investigate the allegations. ‘Am shocked that no copy of the grievances by the teachers has reached my office. I will definitely send a team to the school,” said the DEO.

Mrs Owuor warned that if established that the headmistress indeed administered corporal punishment on a student through caning, then the stern action will be taken.

Speaking to the Press yesterday at Agoro Sare High School during the District Education Day, the parents called on the Ministry of Education to carry out major changes at the school.

Copyright © 2003 Kenya Times Media Trust, All rights reserved.

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