Gobirawa PS, adjudged to be the biggest primary school in West Africa, occupies a huge landmass in Fagge LGEA and serves more than 11, 000 bustling pupils. With the size comes a myriad of challenges! Crumbling infrastructure and poor sanitary conditions with pupils queuing up to use a toilet has plagued Gobirawa PS. Poor management of toilets and water infrastructure by pupils and in some other instances people from neighbouring communities infamously showcased the school as an eyesore for parents and guardians.
The condition of the school in the recent past cost us a number of pupils and dents our record as one of the most promising basic education institutions in Kano State. Our enrolment rate crumbled as a result of the virtual absence of usable toilets and waterKabir Garba Fagge the Head Teacher of Gobirawa PS confessed
ESSPIN deployed a water and sanitation consultant to liaise with SUBEB and head teachers. Together they routinely monitor the condition of water and sanitation infrastructure across schools in Kano state for the benefit of ensuring that they meet minimum requirements for facilitating favourable learning outcomes. Kabir added that we are very much happy and glad that ESSPIN did not abandon us as a result of what was seen in our schools. Ironically, we were accorded more attention, and we are very much motivated by the actions taken after the assessment
ESSPIN introduced an experience-sharing platform for schools tagged ‘Stakeholder Forum’. Schools, Parents, SBMCs, Education Secretaries and Community members were brought together to sit under one roof. Results from monitors and inspectors were then read out for all to know who fared best and/or otherwise vis-à-vis equitable management of infrastructure. Schools with infrastructure in good shape were encouraged to share their experience especially on how they are able to overcome their challenges and maintain a healthy infrastructure.
Kabiru went on sayingI can tell you that the stakeholder forum is a saving grace for us. It is there that we learnt about ways to routinely work on our toilets and make them clean, always. We are also now able to manage our solar-powered borehole favourably, distributing 44, 000 litres available to us for the use of our pupils, and you can see how we rejuvenated our school environment with flowers and trees making it greenish and appeasing
Latecomers clean toilets as a disciplinary measure and this alone has transformed many ardent late comers into committed pupils. ESSPIN provided the school with a 44, 000 litre capacity solar-powered borehole, 20 water points and five blocks of 36 toilet cubicles.Before ESSPIN’s intervention, our enrolment stood at 11, 000, but with the improved services we now boast an army of more than 14, 000 pupils.Kabiru proudly concluded.