AFTER the school came under the spotlight this week, some students of Honiara High School speak openly about what they described as ‘poor management’ of the school.
Bartholomew Wale, Albert Mae and Jude Henry who were students of the school said the school has a lot of problems that must be solved to ensure improved performance of students.
Parents whose children did their form six at the school last year, this week expressed disappointment after form seven placement results were published because no students from the school were listed in any schools.
The school and NESU later clarified that 15 students were selected from the school but all the results were on hold.
That confused parents who said the school was very strict in paying up of school fees which they said resulted in all parents paying up tuition and exam fees before the exams.
They said the school results should not be withheld because the fees were paid up on time.
The above concerned students spelled out some of the problems they said were serious but were never addressed by the school’s administration.
“We students knew well the many issues of the school. Last year according to our observation, absenteeism was one major problem with teachers. Some teachers were too lazy to turn up for teaching.
“Another problem was consumption of alcohol. It became so obvious that some teachers were too into alcohol consumption, either during official or after hours.
“Another serious issue was some teachers having affairs with some female students.”
The three students said while the feared speaking up when they were enrolled at the school may put them in trouble, therefore remained silent as any other students.
“What we’re trying to say is, students were not academically well looked after which resulted in the disorganisation and mass failure.
The student said the Honiara City Council must get anonymous accounts of how the school is managed, from students and compile a report that identify real problems that must be addressed to improve academic results.
“We do not cordon the fact that some students involved in bad activities such as alcohol consumption, but those problems once addressed, students can also do the right thing.
“If the school was organised and impose disciplinary measures that must be acted upon, students will be also change.
“But when change does not happen from the top, it will show in the students.”
When contacted to respond to the claims made by the students, Principal John Maetia said absenteeism is an issue in almost all schools and Honiara High School is no exception.
“Another issue is on teacher’s qualification,” Mr Maetia said.
He said the management had made a lot of attempts in addressing the problems, but it was difficult because the school is not always externally influenced.
“National, provincial and business influence has taken its toll in the school making it difficult to control the external pressures.
“When politicians choose and push in their preferred teachers, we are normally powerless for fear of being unfairly removed.
“Another troubling and major issue is on accommodation. There are no houses for teachers and the land allocated for that has now been developed by some business men.
“Teachers can’t perform when issues such as housing troubles them.
“Unless the school operates like an autonomous institution, no change will be seen within the school,” Mr Maetia added.
By DANIEL NAMOSUAIA and ALFRED PAGEPITU