Thu. Apr 18th, 2024

The incident in Nakaseke, where the district chairperson, Ignatius Kiwanuka Koomu subjected primary school teachers to exams, has drawn the attention of Parliament which is calling for government intervention. 

Under Mr. Koomu’s directive, the P.7 mock exam was administered to teachers from schools that performed poorly in the 2023 Primary Leaving Exams (PLE) on Wednesday, 13 March 2024.

The matter was raised by Hon. Allan Mayanja (NUP, Nakaseke Central) who narrated the teachers’ grievances and the suspense regarding their fate.

“Some teachers are approaching me saying they are being disrespected, they need to know what will follow after the exam. Will the recommendations be given to the District Service Commission or the Public Service Commission for promotion or demotion?” asked Mayanja during the plenary sitting chaired by Speaker, Anita Among, on Friday 15 March 2024.

Mayanja said that teachers are wondering why such an examination does not apply to other districts and are thus seeking answers from the Ministry of Education and Sports.

Speaker Among called for immediate action from government as she questioned such a method used to improve performance.

“We need an explanation, is that the best way to improve on performance? There are several causes of why children fail, such as the delayed payment of teachers, teachers who live far from schools and there is no induction for most of the teachers,” said Among.

She further observed that it was unfair to assess primary one teachers and primary seven teachers using the same standard.  

“After marking, all of them may even fail. What is the way forward, is it a policy that has just come? Teachers are disgruntled [and] they do not want to go to school, they need answers,” Among added.

Hon. Asuman Basalirwa (Jeema, Bugiri Municipality) said that local governments under the decentralisation arrangement have liberty to come up with policies to improve academic performance and asked that the education ministry educate the public on such provisions.

Hon. Dickson Kateshumbwa (NRM, Sheema Municipality) on the other hand said the Nakaseke district chairperson’s efforts to improve education should be commended, cognizant of the degenerating quality of the Universal Primary Education (UPE) system.

“I would commend his decision because it has ignited the debate on why our children are failing PLE. We need to engage him and the district to further understand the drivers of poor performance,” Kateshumbwa said.

The Minister of State for Higher Education, Hon. John Chrysostom Muyingo, said he was equally shocked by the news and had deployed an investigative team to Nakaseke district.

“A team has been dispatched to Nakaseke district to study the decision and a report will be presented to the House,” said Muyingo. 

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Parliament of the Republic of Uganda.

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