A school teacher has come forward with alarming statements about the deteriorating issues Rensarie Junior Secondary School, one of Vanuatu’s oldest Schools is currently facing.
Mr. Stephen Shing who has been teaching at Rensarie College for the past 4 years, has claimed, the incompetence of the school administrators as being the core issues behind the deteriorating state of the school, pointing out the current as being the worst to date with the school administration.
Mr. Shing says “Nepotism has caused great conflict of Interest within the school administration and has been active at Rensarie JSS for quite some time.”
Mr. Shing claims “the current Principal (Bob Oniel) is a ‘father’ (not biologically) to the current Deputy Principal (Benjamin Veremaito) who are both from Uripiv Island, Central Malekula.”
Shing claims both Mr. Oniel and Mr. Verematito are non-education majors (they are agriculture majors) and the Malampa PEO and the College Chairman are being very silent about it.
Mr. Shing believes “the ramifications/repercussions of this ‘conflict of interest’ have created other issues like: overuse/unnecessary use/misuse of college vehicle (by the Principal) to the extend where another vehicle has to be frequently hired to fetch firewood for the college kitchen and bakery since the college vehicle is not always available for service.”
“The Principal said in the second Staff Meeting that he’s got the right to drive the college vehicle whenever he likes and however he wishes.” says Shing, “I presume he doesn’t know the difference between right and privilege.”
Mr. Shing continued “poor student welfare, poor diet, poor sanitation, ablutions are messy, inconsistency with stationary supplies (A4 reams, etc) by the college office, and teachers have to wait for the next stock before normal process resumes”
“The inconsistency/discrepancy with student disciplinary issues is a worry, to the extent that even students who should be suspended are only put on detention”
“The Principal’s daughter was the college Canteen-Keeper for the whole of Term One and 12 weeks of Term Two and even the College Council didn’t even advertise a vacancy requiring a Canteen-Keeper.”
Mr. Shing says “we have experienced shortage in supplies and at one point a depletion of a 44 gallon drum of petrol during the Easter week, and we suspected the fuel was used for private fishing (by the Principal/Deputy Principal) reasonably understood as the school admin has the spare key to the college Workshop where fuel is stored.”
This fishing activity (by Principal/Deputy) occurred over several weeks in the waters around Rensarie bay until the local villagers confronted the two administrators.
“Even ongoing school works were contracted to a Uripiv Contractor to complete new classroom where as villagers in the college’s vicinity have been able to do the job”.
Shing also questions the purchase of a Generator. “Why should the college buy a brand new 2600 Watt Yamaha Generator when it already has two generators? And also the new generator had abruptly gone missing from the Workshop.”
The many complaints include the Principal’s decision to allow several 2016 Year Ten dropouts to register for Year 11 this year, which teachers believe should have been taken before the school council to decide on.”
“The Principal’s absence during the two days the college took to prepare for the Open Day (Parents/Teachers Day) really embarrassed the staff body and he was also absent during the Children’s Day program which the Staff Meeting (chaired by the Principal himself) agreed to observe as a community.”
“Mr. Shing says they were later informed the principle spent that time attending private matters.”
“The Principal teaches Junior Religious Education has taught only one lesson in Term One; at times he does not have the time to teach because he’s always driving and a lot of times we teachers feel as if our principle is also employed as the college’s driver.”
And we hear rumours that Bob Oniel will be the Secondary School Inspector of Malampa as of 2018. How on earth will he be able to perform such a greater duty when he cannot even prove himself with ‘small things’.
Shing says “Rensarie College needs an administrator who is competent who is qualified, experienced, and has the interest to teach children.”
“We need an administrator who can support the school with Project Proposals that will access funds for the renovation of school stationary assets: dorms/ablution facilities, staff houses.”
“We need a new science lab complex, we need a new dining hall, we need to relocate the workshop, setup proper fencing around the college campus, all this cannot happen as the current leadership is heading in the opposite direction and do keep in mind that there never was an upgrade to school infrastructure since it was set up in the 90’s”
“I am coming forward in media to ask the Malampa people to be very concerned about this. This is their college, a provincial pride. Education is our key to prosperity and authorities concerned must do something quickly”
Mr. Shing says “the three positions for Principal/Deputy Admin/Deputy Academic must be advertised now for 2018 and I urge the relevant authorities to resolve this issue before it cripples the school further”