Parents are concerned that the reopening of schools will not be feasible this year as almost all the school going children have outgrown their school uniforms.
In what could be a blow to the government’s effort to reopen schools, parents said that it would be impossible to acquire huge volumes of new uniforms within a short time, owing not to just to financial constrains but also to the unreliable nature of tailors who have never kept a single promise or deadline in the last 183 years.
With schools closed and social distancing in place, the only viable activity that students have been engaging in is eating.
“These children have been eating too much since the schools closed. I have 3 teenagers in the house and for the first time ever, my fridge is always empty. This is the first time ever such a thing is happening.”
Another parent who spoke on condition of anonymity because he did not want the children in future to claim that they were abused when they were young said that her children had developed some bottomless pits instead of stomachs. “The other day I sent them to buy a pizza and they brought eight of them. By the time I finished educating them about the economic implications of what they had done, they had finished eating the pizzas. Maybe times have changed, but I don’t understand how three girls can eat eight pizzas in one seating!”
Tailors and Time
While parents are asking the government to intervene the same way the government is doing with school desks, experts warn that the task is too hard for local tailors. “You know that they never keep their word, and it could take a year before they deliver on this.”
While it is not all the children who have outgrown their uniforms, a number of them have gotten their uniforms torn and worn out because they have been engaged in manual labor instead of idling in a classroom and pretending to be reading. “Children from rural areas and urban slums have been working hard to help their parents. Most of these have been doing this in their school unforms and they are worn out beyond repair.”
The crisis is likely to add to the cosmic confusion that has rocked the Education sector, led by Prof George Magoha.