Learners of the Acacia High school were delighted and excited, when Neo paint and Zentek Computers recently visited their school to contribute to the schools much needed facelift.
Neo paint donated paint while Zentek assisted with stationary and office equipment’s. Ever since the schools existence, it has been struggling to keep up its buildings despite also lacking facilities like a library, laboratory and a sport field, among other needs. Matilda Kandjala,a learner at the school couldn’t hide her excitement saying: “I can’t wait for the renovation. I’ve been at the school for years and I must say the makeover is much-needed to not only pull people to come to our school but also for us to not shy away from our school because of how it looks. This is surely something to be proud of.”
Another learner says he does not like the appearance of the school and sometimes feels embarrassed to even remark that he goes to the school. “The buildings are old and I don’t even show off to my friends, when we have school discussions or debates in my community but with the donation I’m pleased that it will be inviting and look much better,” he says.
However, in the midst of these challenges, the school principle, Sabina
Seibes, says the staff are making significant progress but with external help, it will make things easy. “We are of the opinion that if we help these children to lighten their burden, starting from an academic perspective, we can expect to groom them in top completely developed persons.” Seibes adds that they are making use of one of the unused rooms as a library so that learners can at least have a place where they can read and upgrade their skills.
She is grateful to the sponsors who come forward to assist the school appealing pledge for more to come on board and assist in anyway. “We [are] privileged to have companies taking us by hand. We are therefore pleading for assistance in the form of blankets, jerseys, school uniforms and toiletries. Many children don’t want to come to the school because of the image of the school and I hope this will change,” she says.
Acacia High is situated in Khomasdal and was formerly the Hall of Eldorado Secondary School. The dormitory was later disconnected because the Eldorado could not accommodate all its learners. In 2006, the Eldorado Project School, now Acacia High School, was exclusively opened for Grade 10 failures who could not be accommodated both at Eldorado as well as other schools although legible to attend school. The government could only manage to renovate one block (girl’s hostel) to use as class rooms. This is the only block that is still in use. The Grade 8 intakes was in 2007 and in 2008 the project school was renamed Acacia High School. As a result, the teaching staff find it difficult to teach under these circumstances. “We experience lack of facilities, coupled with the [difficult] socio-economic backgrounds of our learners,” says Seibes.
Learners who are rejected at other schools due to poor performance and being transferred are all absorbed by Acacia High. “This has become a real challenge. We experience a very high level of truancy, absenteeism, drug abuse, juvenile delinquency and socio-economic problems. It is so severe that some learners find it hard to attend classes due to these hardships.” she concludes.