School Feeding Scheme Under Scrutiny

School inspectors and hostel officers from various regions in the education directorate are attending a week-long Namibian School Feeding Programme (NSFP) workshop in Outapi. The aim of the NSFP workshop is to review and find resolutions to the poor service delivery in food storage and the management of all the hostels.

Through deliberations that tackled reports in the media about the dilapidated state of hostels and poor storage of food in the hostels, the issue of teachers left to supervise hostel activities with an extra allowance was singled out as a contributing factor to the lack of and poor hostel supervision of hostel infrastructure and the hostel kitchen at large.

Another contributing factor that was also singled out at the event is the lack of financial resources to cater for the issues addressed in the planning of the hostel.

Similarly, the gathering also touched on the lack of ownership of equipment and infrastructures at the schools. The Chief Inspector of Education in Omusati Region, Laban Shapange emphasised that the people at the schools, especially the principals should take ownership and should be able to answer for the poor service at their schools.

“There are principals who are not aware of what is happening in the schools,” noted Shapange.

He stressed that lack of supervision can create a platform for loopholes and for supervisors to do as they please.

The current state of many hostels in Namibia as presented by various speakers are said to be in a very dilapidated state. Shapange said, “It is true most of our hostels are in an undesirable state and some deserved to be closed as they are not fit for human habitat.” Although regions remained challenged by poor service in monitoring hostel facilities including the kitchens, preparations still remain a challenge.

Speaking at the event, the Inspector of Onathinge Circuit in Oshikoto Region, Naemi Amuthenu made reference to a school visit where fish was prepared without being cleaned. Some other serious issues also addressed is the poor storage of food which has also recently raised concern in the media where bags of maize were discovered to be faulty after they have not been properly stored.

Shapange said the workshop participants have a huge responsibility of overseeing monitoring, and inspecting the hostels to positively contribute to the quality of learning of our children. He stressed that the primary obligation is to ensure that the resources are effectively utilised to psychological and socially motivate learners and to create a favourable second home away from home for all the learners housed in school hostels.

At the end of the workshop, delegates expect to find solutions to the unending problems in the hostels and to find the solutions to improve the current situations.

Source : New Era