There is a school of thought that the availability of a conducive learning environment, especially at the basic education level, ensures the provision of a sound academic foundation for school pupils.
However, a number of public basic schools in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District in the Savannah Region do not have such conducive environment to make teaching and learning a pleasurable and rewarding experience.
The current state of the Tampoi primary school in the District shows that one will not be right to entirely blame pupils and teachers of basic schools in such deprived communities for poor academic performance since such schools do not have the right environment for academic work to thrive.
At the Tampoi Primary School, which has existed for many years, more than 185 school pupils are currently studying in dilapidated classrooms with its attendant consequences on the academic performance of the school pupils.
The school with 185 enrollment runs a multi-graded system where two classes were combined into one class.
The school lacks some infrastructure which is causing overcrowding affecting teaching and learning.
The development has compelled many school children to drop out of school, since they cannot always lie on the floor in their quest to acquire formal education.
This includes many teenage school girls who have drop out since they could no longer go to school and always sit and lie on the floor. Most of the dropouts,
some of them girls, end up on the streets and engage in all forms of vices leading to teenage pregnancy.
Some of the pupils told Yagbon News that they were always demotivated going to school since it was difficult sitting on the floor every day to learn.
“Due to the lack of furniture in the classroom, we sometimes feel reluctant to go to school,” they said
They added that they sometimes experienced severe stomach and back pains while lying on the floor in the classroom.
The condition of the classrooms is indeed an impediment to academic work as the school children have to lie with their faces to the ground to write exercises and do other academic work given to them by their teachers.
Many of the school pupils struggle to follow lessons being taught since they find it very difficult and uncomfortable to lie on their stomach every day to take part in academic work and do exercises as well.
The pupils in their daily struggle to acquire basic education contend with dust with its accompanying health conditions, as they lie on the dusty floor in their respective classrooms.
Another worrying development is the fact that the uniforms of the school pupils are always dirty, since they lie and sit on the floor to study, a situation which compels them to wash their uniforms every day to be able to attend school.
Some parents who cannot bear the situation where the uniforms of their children have to be washed every day have no option than to prevent their children from going to school, and this results in negative effects on their studies.
A common feature among the children is the fact that some of them doze off and eventually sleep while lessons are ongoing, since they lie on the floor.
The community is therefore appealing to the MP for Sawla-Tuna-Kalba constituency, the government, and philanthropists to come to the aid of the school.
Ghana has signed onto SDG 4 which calls for ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and the promotion of lifelong learning opportunities for all.