The SOS Hermann Gmeiner International has built a provincial school in Basse. The school consists of 64 pupils ranging from grade one to three. In an interview with The Point, the school Headmaster Mr. Ismaila Njie, said that their school is a private, non-profit venture that aims to deliver quality education to all pupils. All the necessary tools for quality assurance, he noted, are available and well-trained human resources are also in place. He said that despite being a private school their fees are just D100 per term.
Mr. Njie further stated that the school is a basic cycle school and they are expecting more children as the school grows up. “We want to make sure we deliver quality education to the children in Upper River Region, because people here have been crying for the low performance of students, so the SOS has come to solve such problems so that it can be thing of past,” he said. He continued saying, “but our admission policy is strict because our new intakes had to sit to an entrance examination before they are enroll, we always give concessions to those who attended our kindergarten”.
On the issue of the constraints they encounter, Njie disclosed that a transportation problem is one of their main constraints as some of the children from the community face a lot of problems in order to reach the school. “The parents teacher association (PTA) committee were able to find a vehicle that brings children to school every day and they pay D150 per month which is also hindering the enrolment. The PTA are still trying to meet the philanthropists and NGOs to help them get a permanent transport for the school going children,” he said.
Njie finally called on all parents to make the best use of the opportunity by sending children to SOS as it is one of the best schools in the region.
“Some parents complain that there is no payment in public schools whilst we charge D100. I want to tell them that education is not cheap and they should therefore endeavour to send their children to SOS. We are also expecting to enroll grade seven by the next academic year and computer studies will be included in our syllabus starting from grade one onwards as we already have French in our curriculum from kindergarten upwards,” he emphasized.