Parents whose children cannot attend high school in their own backyard were excited recently when the Vice President of Liberia and standard bearer of the ruling Unity Party (UP), Joseph Boakai, promised to construct a modern state-of-the-art high school in Gblorseo Town, River Cess County.
The school, when completed, will be the only high school in that part of the county to cater to thousands of students who are yearning for education after several years without a high school. VP Boakai made the promise when he visited the county on an invitation from the residents, who earlier endorsed his presidential bid for the October polls.
Boakai’s promise to construct the school resulted from a petition by residents of Gblorseo Town, a distant town from Cestos, the political capital of the county, who appealed to him and the government for a high school annex to the Nyorwein Public School, which terminates at the 10th grade level. The residents want their children to obtain a better high school education at home before moving elsewhere to acquire university degrees.
“When people speak with one voice to request for a specific priority like education for their children, it means they are serious about urgent intervention. Therefore, I will immediately send a team to look at the school and provide the estimate so that we can begin the project that will benefit our children who are in need of better education,” VP Boakai assured.
He said it was beyond anyone’s understanding that such a populated town does not have at least a high school that will cater to the academic needs of the youth. VP Boakai promised to work with county officials and women’s groups to ensure that education is prioritized in the county, especially for those living in rural areas.
The secretary of Nyorwein District Youth Caucus, Fredee Konway, said since 2011 when President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf visited the town and promised to construct a high school, “she is yet to fulfill her promise.” Konway said the town is one of the vote-rich areas in the county that unfortunately has a school that stops at the 10th grade and a clinic that can no longer handle the influx of patients.
“This Nyorwein Public School is the only school that we have up to the 10th grade, which means when our children have completed the 10th grade, that is the end of their academic journey, because not many of us can afford to go to Buchanan in Grand Bassa County to complete high school. And so, the construction of an annex to raise the standard of the school to 12th grade is urgently needed,” Konway said.
The request for a modern school remains a major concern of the citizens, including women, youth, and elders who all stated that it would be good to have a school that will equip their children for the job market. David Toby, who spoke on behalf of the Elders Council, told VP Boakai and his delegation that education remains a major challenge for their children, saying the young are “living in darkness.”
“Limited educated people is the cause of River Cess County being underdeveloped, so if our county will be developed, government must focus on the education system, because there are too many young people who are yearning for at least a high school education,” Elder Toby said.
As part of the VP’s visit to the county, he met with youth leaders, women and elders who expressed similar sentiments about their children’s education as well as the construction of a good road network in the county.