Teachers in South Western Uganda have urged government to construct accommodation facilities in a bid to reduce teacher absenteeism in schools.
The appeal was made on Saturday during the celebrations of Teachers Day in Boma, Mbarara municipality.
The national celebrations were held in Kamuli district in Busoga region under the theme “Young teachers the future of the profession”.
During the celebrations in Mbarara, David Muhanguzi Kaniga, the Coordinator of Uganda National Teachers’ Union (UNATU) appealed to government to provide teachers’ staff quarters to minimize on absenteeism in schools.
“We are appealing government to put staff quarters at every school in the whole country such that our teachers can be accommodated at their respective stations. Our teachers move long distances to get to where they teach,” he said.
Muhanguzi challenged teachers to provide the best results in schools as government keeps supporting them.
“As government is trying to enhance the teachers’ salaries, they also need to put in more effort in the classroom such that we can see the results at the end of it all”.
“It is very absurd for the government to increase the salaries and put accommodation in place for the teachers when the grades are not realized,” said Muhanguzi.
On his part, Mbarara district Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Kweyamba Ruhemba asked teachers to impart good discipline both in Secondary and Primary schools.
“You must understand that discipline affects institutions of government and this means we must have discipline in Primary and Secondary schools to attain perfect education which is the pinnacle of development”.
“This discipline will start with head teachers and the committees, then moves to teachers and then to learners. If you don’t know that then our schools cannot improve,” Ruhemba explained
He noted that the future of the teaching profession is the future of Uganda.
Responding to the plea regarding accommodation, Ruhemba said that government-aided schools have staff quarters although he admitted these are not enough.
“Many schools do have staff houses they might not be looking good but they are there. So, we think that those without we shall start with them”
He revealed that plans are underway to construct more staff houses for teachers to enable them execute their duties in a favorable environment.
“We shall construct teachers’ staff houses within a period of two years because when a person has nowhere to sleep, they will not do their work well,” Ruhemba said.