Screen_Shot_2014-05-14_at_8.42.43_PMWe have been following the progress of the improvements at the Ranchito Government School where students were sent home for one week to allow officials from the Ministries of Health and Education to make necessary assessments and arrangements to fix a rodent, insect and bat infestation. When we visited the school today, the students were back on their lessons. School principal Yesenia Tun says they still have to accommodate three classes in the Community Center but they have to ensure it’s an environment conducive to learning.


Yesenia Tun- Principal 


“Presently classes began yesterday from pre-school to standard three, the four, five and six students we can’t relocate them and they will be relocated at the Community Centre and they can’t be relocated because bathroom facilities are not available as yet but for Monday they will have classes then and all the teacher are setting up their chairs and we had ministry personnel came in this morning and they said that they will do their best to have it ready for Monday.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“How long are they going to stay at these places that you are relocating them, for how long?”


Yesenia Tun- Principal 


“Well, I think for the remaining school year and for next school year as well because I can’t put them out of the classroom, I met with the staff last week and we had a long discussion and we decided that our second exam was supposed to be the second week in June but because of what is happening we brought it up for the following week so regarding four, five and six the teachers have met with me and we discussed on that since we are missing another week so they will be dismissing at four o’clock and so yes we will be covering the curriculum for this year all that we have planned and it won’t affect the children in any way.”


Tun has been the Principal for nine years at the institution and says they have been in need of the assistance for some time now. Initially the school administration had been asking for a refurbishing of the school buildings but after a visit from the Belize Central Building Authority officials, two buildings were declared unsafe for the children. Their health was one of the biggest concerns for officials. Tun says students and even teachers had been experiencing health problems but before the health officials got involved they never linked it to the dilapidated conditions of the building.


Yesenia Tun- Principal 


“Last year it affected our enrollment and the attendance because children didn’t use to come and they know already that on that side of the ceiling it will leak a lot and they sometimes have to hurry move them so for rainy season we use to have a poor attendance.”


The Education Center Manager at Corozal, Jahmor Lopez, says they applaud the united effort by the community in ensuring the matter at the school is attended to.


Jahmore Lopez- Principal 


“Certainly we continue to look to our entire infrastructure but we need to understand that it is a school community and it is best that we deal with an ounce of prevention than opposed to ten pound of cure, we can give you a brand new building that cost 15 million dollars and if it won’t do the necessary maintenance you lose that entire building so it is for all of four stakeholders to own these facilities and they say a stich in time saves nine and so we have to give credit to the Ranchito community who came out in full force.”


The school administration had submitted an application for refurbishing the school buildings but after officials from the Social Investment Fund made their assessment it was clear the need at the school was bigger and works to get a new building constructed began. That work is still ongoing says Tun and the hope is for that building to be constructed in 2015.


We have been following the progress of the improvements at the Ranchito Government School where students were sent home for one week to allow officials from the Ministries of Health and Education to make necessary assessments and arrangements to fix a rodent, insect and bat infestation. When we visited the school today, the students were back on their lessons. School principal Yesenia Tun says they still have to accommodate three classes in the Community Center but they have to ensure it’s an environment conducive to learning.


Yesenia Tun- Principal


“Presently classes began yesterday from pre-school to standard three, the four, five and six students we can’t relocate them and they will be relocated at the Community Centre and they can’t be relocated because bathroom facilities are not available as yet but for Monday they will have classes then and all the teacher are setting up their chairs and we had ministry personnel came in this morning and they said that they will do their best to have it ready for Monday.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“How long are they going to stay at these places that you are relocating them, for how long?”


Yesenia Tun- Principal 


“Well, I think for the remaining school year and for next school year as well because I can’t put them out of the classroom, I met with the staff last week and we had a long discussion and we decided that our second exam was supposed to be the second week in June but because of what is happening we brought it up for the following week so regarding four, five and six the teachers have met with me and we discussed on that since we are missing another week so they will be dismissing at four o’clock and so yes we will be covering the curriculum for this year all that we have planned and it won’t affect the children in any way.”


Tun has been the Principal for nine years at the institution and says they have been in need of the assistance for some time now. Initially the school administration had been asking for a refurbishing of the school buildings but after a visit from the Belize Central Building Authority officials, two buildings were declared unsafe for the children. Their health was one of the biggest concerns for officials. Tun says students and even teachers had been experiencing health problems but before the health officials got involved they never linked it to the dilapidated conditions of the building.


Yesenia Tun- Principal 


“Last year it affected our enrollment and the attendance because children didn’t use to come and they know already that on that side of the ceiling it will leak a lot and they sometimes have to hurry move them so for rainy season we use to have a poor attendance.”


The Education Center Manager at Corozal, Jahmor Lopez, says they applaud the united effort by the community in ensuring the matter at the school is attended to.


Jahmore Lopez- District Manager 


“Certainly we continue to look to our entire infrastructure but we need to understand that it is a school community and it is best that we deal with an ounce of prevention than opposed to ten pound of cure, we can give you a brand new building that cost 15 million dollars and if it won’t do the necessary maintenance you lose that entire building so it is for all of four stakeholders to own these facilities and they say a stich in time saves nine and so we have to give credit to the Ranchito community who came out in full force.”


The school administration had submitted an application for refurbishing the school buildings but after officials from the Social Investment Fund made their assessment it was clear the need at the school was bigger and works to get a new building constructed began. That work is still ongoing says Tun and the hope is for that building to be constructed in 2015.

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