Two Belait schools to relocate students

National 2 minutes, 16 seconds


FLOODS have prompted two religious schools in Kuala Belait to relocate their students temporarily.

The decision was made following Minister of Religious Affairs Yang Berhormat Pengiran Dato Seri Setia Dr Hj Mohammad Pengiran Hj Abdul Rahman’s visit to the schools yesterday.

“We have seen the situation at the primary school and the floods have inhibited the school children from studying to their best (potential),” the minister told The Brunei Times on the sidelines of his visit.

“Hence, we must resolve where they (the students) are to be relocated to,” the minister added during his visit at Paduka Seri Begawan Sultan Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Religious School in Belait district.

He said students of Sultan Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Religious School would be moved to Belait Arabic School as a temporary solution to the floods.

YB Pengiran Dato Dr Hj Mohammad said students in classes not affected by the floods, namely those in the school’s block F and E, would continue to study at the school.

“The school will also be undergoing renovation, which should roughly take six months and hopefully by September, the students (who are temporarily moved) can return to the school,” the minister said.

For students studying at Panaga Religious School, the minister said they would be temporarily moved to Pengiran Anak Puteri Hjh Rashidah Ugama School in Seria.

Muhd Saiful Faizal, a religious teacher at Sultan Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Religious School, said the floods do not pose a significant problems, but it affects the teaching and learning environments.

“The floods do not obstruct cars from driving in, but it is inconvenient to enter the school and (try to keep our feet dry) in the classroom,” the 33-year-old teacher said.

The teacher said when it floods, their shoes and socks would be soaked with floodwater, but removing their footwear was not a good idea either.

“If we (the teachers) or schoolchildren take off our shoes, it exposes our feet to centipedes possibly brought over (by the flood),” the religious teacher added.

Another route for the flood to enter the classes and teacher’s staff room are the cracks on the floors of the room.

Muhd Irwan Hj Sabtu, another religious teacher from the same school, said the floodwaters flow into the classrooms.

“Water entering is one thing, but it becomes a problem when the water accumulates and becomes a puddle in a classroom,” the 34-year-old said.

Although floodwaters have subsided yesterday, the minister and his delegation of officials were able to inspect the damage done to the physical structure of both school buildings.

Accompanying the minister during the visit yesterday were Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs Pengiran Dato Paduka Hj Bahrom Hj Bahar and other senior ministry officials.

The Brunei Times