The Ministry of Education sent an instruction to schools that would see 1,813,181 liters of milk consumed daily in Rwandan nursery, primary and secondary schools.
In January this year, the Ministry asked all schools to offer at least half a liter of milk per day to each student
“We firmly request all nursery, primary and secondary schools that on the diet destined to children, at least ½ liter of milk should be included without fail,” Eugene Mutimura, the Minister of Education tweeted.
The instruction was drawn from the school feeding policy of the ministry, and since schools are reminded to comply with each visit.
With milk production standing at 2,269,444.4 liters per day, 79.8 percent of daily milk generated will be shared by a population of 3,626,362 learners comprising nursery, main and secondary schools in Rwanda, according to 2018 statistics.
Based on the Integrated Household Living Conditions Survey (EICV5), which estimates the Rwandan population at 11.8 million in 2016/17, the rest of the market ; 8.1 million individuals would share the remaining 456.263.4 liters, leaving other factors constant.
The instruction on new school feeding will have a lot of milk going to schools. However, the ministry indicates that priorities will be considered if necessary.
“We believe that the supply can suffice our schools and if not we should look at who needs milk most,” said Rose Baguma, an official at Ministry of education who has among other responsibilities, school feeding policy.
Every day, the Ministry of Education provides Rwf 56 in the current agreement for every kid in public and schools with government subsidy for school meal.
The cash, Baguma said, will rise to Rwf 150, something that is thought to have begun in nursery schools and Primary 1, though authorities are unable to say the quantity of milk engaged as of today.
However, the Ministry promotes schools and parents to contribute to this cause.
Schools ‘Not Ready’
While colleges seem to love this program, it will take them a few times to adopt it.
Pastor Samuel Mutabazi, in charge of Education in the Anglican Church of Rwanda, told KT Press; “the initiative is commendable because it will improve children’s welfare and thus, improve quality of education.”
“The Ministry however, should consider that they started enforcing this new move when schools had made their budget which in many cases, is wanting.”
Mutabazi said that the government subsidy is not enough and in many cases, “parents do not help much in school feeding. At the end of the day, the program is left to the schools alone.”
Father Janvier Nduwayezu, in charge of education in Catholic Church also concurs with the Ministry that the program is important, but added, “they (ministry) were supposed to sit with so we look at feasibility.”
However, Nduwayezu thinks that colleges should not sit back.” They can begin rearing cows to make sure they can get milk themselves. Why not even rearing hens for eggs in this move? Providing balances of diet for our kids will change the quality of education.”