Friday, December 15, 2017

Parents protest over poor conditions at Rio Claro school


WANT REPAIRS: Parents and guardians of pupils attending the Santa Rita RC Primary School in San Pedro protest in front of the school yesterday, calling for immediate repairs to the school. —Photo: TREVOR WATSON

Mark Fraser

BAT droppings, a leaking sewer and dirty water are the reasons parents are keeping their children away from a primary school in Rio Claro.

Parents protested with placards yesterday outside the Santa Rita Roman Catholic Primary School in Tabaquite, Rio Claro. The protest began at around 9 a.m.

Spokesperson Savitri Persad said since Monday, parents have kept their children out of school and will continue to do so unless the problems were solved.

She said the school’s principal had written to the Ministry of Education and the Public Health Department about the issues, but nothing was done to improve conditions.

Persad said: “The reason why we are having this protest is because there are bat droppings in the classroom, bats are flying out of the ceiling, coming and liming with the children, when they finish lime, they go back in the ceiling.”

She said: “The water is coming out brown. There is mosquito larvae in it. The toilets are in a really bad state. The sewer is leaking.”

Almost 125 pupils were affected, she said, and teachers were refusing to attend classes.

The school has been plagued with these problems for three years, she said.

And pupils at the Exchange Roman Catholic Primary School in Couva have not been attending classes regularly since school began.

Nisha Wiseman, president of the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) said the school had sewer problems.

A meeting was expected to be held with school officials yesterday evening to address the issue, she said.

Several attempts to get a response from the Ministry of Education yesterday were futile.