GOBABIS: Parents with children in school hostels across the Omaheke Region have raised concerns about the safety of their children in light of the ongoing strike by teachers in the region.
Teachers in the region decided to down tools on Wednesday in solidarity with their colleagues in the Khomas Region, who are demanding that salary negotiations which commenced last October be concluded.
Parents inundated the Nampa regional office here with calls for investigations into what will happen to their children who reside in school hostels, as they are left with little or no supervision.
Since most of the teachers are on strike, parents fear that some hostel superintendents and supervisors might have joined the strike, leaving the learners on their own.
When this agency visited the two schools with hostel facilities here – Epako Secondary School and Wennie du Plessis High School – only a few learners could be seen in the hostels.
Some learners allege that they were told to go home by their hostel supervisors “because they were on strike”.
The learners, however, had some form of supervision by virtue of some teachers who live in the hostels, regardless of whether they participated in the strike or not as they would retire to the hostel for the evening.
At Drimiopsis, where teachers of the Mokganedi Thlabanelo High School have also joined the strike, hostel learners were seen scattered at shops situated next to the school. Only a few of them were in their dormitories by midday.
Teachers, at a meeting held here on Tuesday, decided that they would call on parents to collect their children from the hostel for the children’s own safety. The meeting attracted teachers from all corners of the region, ranging from Eiseb Blok to Aminuis, and Otjinene to Otjombinde.
This decision was however never enforced and children remain on the premises, albeit with little supervision in some cases.
Some parents have however already withdrawn their children from the school hostels, Nampa has learnt.
All schools in the rural areas have hostel facilities for learners due to the distance of the schools from their actual residences.