The administration of Lolachat seed secondary school in Nabilatuk district is considering ending the second academic term prematurely citing the rising food prices.

Lolachat seed secondary school has 257 students in the Ordinary level, all in a boarding section.

The head teacher, Lazarus Kyuha, says that the ministry of education calendar indicates that the schools will officially close on August 12th, 2022 but they are contemplating closing earlier due to the lack of resources to cater for the students at school.

He explains that the skyrocketing food prices have affected them and they can no longer afford to feed the students daily as it was before.

‘’We have been hit by hunger and whatever we had in our stores is over so we shall be forced to release these students back home as we plan for the third term’’ he said. Kyuha says parents pay Shillungs 180,000 per term but only 10 percent of the total enrollment have cleared this money, which is insufficient to run the school activities.

He says the high food and commodity prices have worsened their condition, adding that they used to buy a can of maize grains that is equivalent to two kilograms at Shillings 3,000 but it now goes for between Shillings 10,000 and 11,000. Kyuha said that they have written severally to the district authorities but they have not recieved any feedback.

Raymond Korobe, the Nabilatuk District Education Officer, acknowledged that the seed school has been struggling to feed students because they are not enrolled in the WFP feeding program. Korobe explained that the school was initially under the community and was not entitled to benefit from the school feeding program.

He, however, says that they have written to WFP for consideration. Korobe also notes that they have not yet received any letter from the school management regarding the planned closure but they will consider their request depending on their condition.

He said that they are trying as much as possible to lobby resources for the school management most especially in addressing the challenge of food shocks.

Paul Lokol, the Nabilatuk LCV chairperson observed that the majority of schools in the district are most likely to close prematurely following the hunger that has hit the region.

Lokol said the hunger crisis in the community has driven up the enrollment of children in schools but the food distributed by the world food programme is not enough.

He says that many reports have been submitted to the office of the prime minister for relief support for the schools but all in vain. Lokol said there is a need for the government to supply relief food to schools because the ratio distributed by WFP may not be enough to cater to every child.

“The whole region is attacked by famine but I would urge the government to put more attention to schools, you know its food that keeps these children at school or else they will run away’’ he warned. Lokol added that the food crisis at schools should be addressed urgently because Karamoja is still struggling to convince the children to stay at school and such situations may force them to drop out.

In 2021, the Chinese government partnered with the World Food Programme to ensure primary and secondary school students in karamoja have access to food. China has been providing maize and beans to WFP to feed over 120,000 students in 300 schools across the region.

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