MORE than 1000 school children in the remote Kaintiba and Kotidanga districts in Gulf province could be forced to skip classes for the rest of the year as a result of food shortage that has been experienced by people in the area for the past two months.
A parish priest from Kanabea local level government in Kaintiba, reported that more than 20 primary schools in Kaintiba and Kotidanga were likely to suspend school and send children home until the food shortage problem was solved.
People have been experiencing food shortage in the area since June as a result of continuous heavy rains that destroyed food crops from garden and affected food growth.
Fr Philip Sivi said some of the schools have already approached the provincial education board in Kerema to suspend classes because students were forced to stay back home and look for food.
“The problem has become worse and children’s learning has become disrupted as a result of food shortage,” Fr Sivi said adding that operations at aid posts and the district office were also affected.
Fr Sivi confirmed that a team of officials from education and health office in Kerema including provincial disaster coordinator Hau Keko had chartered a flight out to Kaintiba yesterday morning to asses the situation following reports of the disaster.