Danger looms; pupils use sinking building as classrooms

The lives of pupils of the Christ Church Anglican Basic School in Cape Coast in the Central Region are in danger as their classroom building is could collapse if immediate steps are not taken. The building, sited on a waterlogged area near the Adisadel College, is currently sinking into the ground while a part of it is submerged during the rainy seasons, a situation that leaves pupils and teachers stranded. Personnel from the Ghana National fire service have on one occasion had to evacuate pupils and teachers. Pupils are sometimes forced to stay at home when there is a heavy downpour while pupils are either relocated from the ground floor to the first floor or the school is closed down. When 3news visited the school last week, the flooded water had left markings around the lower section of the block. Some of the classrooms on the ground floor were locked up but others which are still in use have visible cracked floors.Teachers and pupils of the school fear the building, which was constructed about 30 years ago, could collapse as the building keeps sinking. Some parents told 3news.com anytime it starts raining 8:00am, their wards do not go to school. They say there have been countless times that the children have not been able to go to school because of the rains. “I sometimes help carry the little one at my back to cross the flood to safety.” one parent who spoke on condition of anonymity said. Some of the pupils confirmed they have had to be rescued by the Ghana National Fire Service on one occasion. “The fire service rescued us once. They put a ladder in front of the school and we were made to descend to the roadside where there was no water,” one pupil said. The headmistress, Araba Debrah, told 3news.com that four classes now share two classrooms; class three and four in one room and five and six share another. Teachers take turns to teach, and in the end, do fewer periods than they are supposed to due to the limited classrooms because of the rains. The Rev. Phillip Quaque Anglican Church, which is about ten metres away from the school block, accommodates the kindergarten pupils. The head teacher said several letters were written to the previous administration at the metropolitan assembly but no solutions were offered. They are however yet to notify the incumbent one. When contacted, Public Relations Officer for the Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly, Richmond Yeboah, said engineers are to assess the situation ahead of the rainy season, but said they were waiting for a formal request from the school for further action. As the school and Metropolitan Authorities prepare to send and receive formal notification respectively, the lives of the pupils continue to be in danger as it has been predicted that the country will experience heavy rains this year.

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By Adwoa Adobea-Owusu|3news.com|Ghana]]>