Surprising how when things aren’t going well you aren’t keen to share news - thus the recent pause in blog posts. Things seem to be on almost a standstill here – full of frustration and failed attempts !
In our never ending desperate bid to try to save the grade school we traipsed around buildings once again in a vain attempt to try to hire a place) for the school – but no one wants to rent buildings to schools since the new government rules and regulations demand that very large rooms are required thus there would be knocking down on walls. No matter how hard we have tried to convince people that we would rebuild walls when we eventually left their property, no one is willing to let us rent.
So as it stands we have only two very very remote possibilities – the first is renting out a huge compound which used to be used as a school. However, this place is on the opposite side of the town and the rent is four times our current payment – which was a stretch. However, it is a larger compound, so it would be possible to go straight up to grade 8 – which has always been one of our long term aims.
The main problem however is that the owner is hivering and hovering since a foreign NGO approached her and offered her a massive 8 times our current rent – way out of proportion to the amount the property is worth. This NGO now appears to have vanished but the owner is still holding out to see if they return and won’t even start negotiations with us.
The other option – even more remote than the first – is that of getting English Alive to be an exception to the rule and being allowed to stay at our current compound. New school rules have been introduced which demand that all grade schools have a classroom for Oromifa ( the local language ) and the size requirement of classrooms has been altered ( with no regard to how many pupils will be taught there ) This has meant that a number of schools in Nazret have not met the criteria and has thus been closed down.
As a result, all schools are required to renew their license this year and we are currently awaiting inspection ( which will hopefully be this week ) We plan to pass the inspection ( hopefully ) and get a letter from the government people to say that we do good work etc and then beg the license people to overlook the rule on ownership. This is a very long shot – but at this stage we need to try everything we can !
Can honestly say that this is the most stressful time of my entire life – we are so deeply attached to the school and the possibility of the grade school closing is too hard to even bear thinking about.
As time races ahead and the days tick by, our possibilities get smaller and smaller but still can’t bear to think of plan B ( which is currently non existent ) as too much to bear.