LRA-Affected Children School To Become Paramedical School

Laroo School of War Affected Children is currently closed after the beneficiaries dropped out. Government now wants to turn it into a paramedical school.
Laroo school that the ministry wants to turn into a paramedical school

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Laroo School of War Affected Children, which was established to educate ex-LRA returnees, is to be transformed into a paramedical school of Northern Uganda.

The school, established in 2005 by the Belgium government at a tune of 2.5 billion shillings, has been facing management and admission challenges ever since it was opened.

According to Gulu district chairman, Martin Ojara Mapenduzi, education and district officials are considering changing it into a paramedical school. He says a committee has already been set up to look into how this can be implemented.

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Although the major purpose of the school was to help ex-LRA abductees who faced challenges in the normal education schools, the number of children returning from captivity has heavily reduced. The school is currently closed after beneficiaries dropped out of school.

The school has also been facing administrative challenges. Up to ten suppliers took the school to court, which later attached the school property to compensate for the supplies made. However, government last month rescued the school after it paid over 470 million shillings to the suppliers.

A meeting of stakeholders in Kampala on Tuesday decided that the school should be turned into a paramedical school, since Gulu did not have one. The meeting was attended by Gulu district chairman; the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education; the Principal, Gulu School of Clinical Officers; chairperson of the school management committee; among others.

The meeting agreed that Gulu School of Clinical officers currently occupying Gulu Referral Hospital land, would relocate to Laroo school of war affected children, paving way for the start of the paramedical school.

Mackmot Kitara, the chairperson of the school management committee says that the school was difficult to manage, but the children for whom the school was founded were also no longer there. 

David Ochen, a parent at school however welcomes the development but is worried that the children who were supposed to benefit from the school have since dropped out of school.