The directorate of education in the Hardap region in collaboration with various stakeholders have embarked on a 2021 admission advocacy campaign to encourage parents in the region to enrol their children between the ages of six to 16 for the new academic year.
A team from the education directorate accompanied by representatives from various ministries such as the ministry of information visited the three educational circuits to host information sharing sessions.
The sessions had the core function of accelerating learner registration, increase school admission and to ensure children are back in schools as well as to share information about various services offered by other ministries in the region.
Speaking during the official launch of the campaign, Hardap governor Salomon April urged all parents as well as traditional authorities, church leaders, local councillors and line ministries to play their part by assisting the education directorate to register all children who are currently out of school to enable them to be admitted, enrolled and attend school next year.
“Due to the destruction caused by Covid-19 pandemic, I would like to request parents and schools to allow a grace period of up to the 30th of October 2020 to submit application forms in Hardap region at the respective schools. I would like to accentuate and call upon inhabitants of Hardap region to work together, to unite and cooperate to ensure that all children of school going age, between six and 16 years are registered and return to school in the coming academic year,” said April.
After the lifting of the state of emergency due to Covid-19, all learners were expected to be back at their respective schools, however, some parents still opted to keep their children at home due to the fear of contracting the virus, while some withdrew their children because they lost their jobs as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Some parents could not send their children back to school due to the remoteness of their farms and settlements and a lack of income to pay for hostel fees and transport fares.
In response to this fear, the regional director of education in the region, Gerhard Ndafenongo assured the parents that Covid-19 prevention measures were put in place to curb the spread of the virus on school premises.
“Whatever happens with Covid-19, we are prepared as government, you can see the ministry of health is here; the office of the president is here, if anything happens to kids while they are in the hostel, we take responsibility,” said Ndafenongo.
Ndafenongo stressed that it is important for all children in the region who are of school-going age to be in school in order to break the cycle of generational poverty. He also urged parents to ensure that their children are registered by the end of October this year.
“When they are in schools, that is the only way we will make sure that these kids are developing and are brought up in a way that they are able to live on their own later on. We don’t want to have children that are just replacing their parents in the farm, after the parents grow old, the son take over as a farmworker, give birth to another child and then replace him. That is called generational poverty, just poverty after poverty. We want to break that cycle,” he said.