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The Closure of 84 Private Schools

 

This edition of the Enlightener Newsletter as usual, brings to the fore the positive developments that have happened in the education sector since our last edition. Many things have taken place, but the central focus of this newsletter is the closure of 84 private schools in the country a few weeks ago.

 

The closure of these schools was as a result of investigations by the taskforce established to monitor the activities of private schools following a report made during the Coordinating Committee Meeting held in Region One last year. The report indicated the non-compliance with national laws especially the Education Act by many of the schools.

 

This left the leadership of MoBSE with no option but to clamp down on those schools that are not complying with the laws of the country. Eventhough many a Gambian is of the belief that private schools are better managed that public schools. The findings of the taskforce however, revealed otherwise. During a year-long investigation by the taskforce, chaired by the Deputy Permanent Secretary, Admin, MoBSE, Mr. Ebrima Sisawo, it was discovered that many private schools lacked proper facilities like toilets.

 

Perhaps what was even more of a concern was the fact that many of the closed schools did not register with MoBSE. These were very serious issues that needed urgent attention. Thank God the leadership in MoBSE decided to take up the challenge; as the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Baboucarr Bouy said, “It is better late than never.”

 

The Enlightener would like to take this opportunity to urge all the private schools that were closed down to continue working on meeting the standards to resume operations, and for those schools that have not been closed, to keep up the momentum.

 

Our final words go to the parents and the entire Gambian society. As the Minister for Basic and Secondary Education said, parents need to show more interest in the future of their children. Many parents are aware of the condition of the schools they were sending their children to, but still want to leave them there.

 

The goal of MoBSE is to provide quality and relevant education to the children of this country. This cannot be done in isolation. All hands must be on deck to achieve this. 

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