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No more classes in tents

Repeka Nasiko
Thursday, February 01, 2018

STUDENTS of Ratu Filimoni Vukinamualevu Memorial School in Sorokoba, Ba, will no longer have to study in tents.

Since Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston, the school's Year 1 to Year 3 students have been learning in tents until the beginning of the 2018 school year.

Headteacher Milika Nabalavu said the students began the school year in a new three classroom block completed earlier this year.

"It was a real struggle for the students because sometimes we would have an overcrowded tent and sometimes we would have to reshuffle the students and have two classes in one room," she said.

"This is why we are really happy to have this new classroom block because our young students will not have to be in tents any more.

"I am grateful to the ministry for helping us complete this building in time for the new school year."

While opening the new school block, Minister for Education Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said quite a few schools damaged during Severe TC Winston were being completed this year.

"We have said in many of the schools that have yet to be opened, we have asked the teachers and management to start using the classrooms," he said.

"It is very important that they start using the classrooms. As highlighted by the headteacher, Winston caused enormous damage in Fiji. In fact, we lost nearly $US1.2 billion ($F2.39b) of our GDP which is very high and as a result over 200 schools got damaged.

"So we've started a massive rebuild and we allocated $170 million or thereabouts to ensure the rebuilding of these schools in a very cyclone sensitive manner. These buildings have been built to a particular strength that can withstand cyclonic wind."

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