A Boy Who Hates School

By Assani Rajabu

It’s both funny and sad how much my neighbor’s son hates school. He has done everything in his power to convince his parents that he does not want to go to school. It all started when he did the exams for standard two in primary school. He failed terribly. In a class of fifty students, he came out forty-eighth. When he went home that day, he did not show his exam results to his parents. He just tore up the school report. He thought that his parents would not ask him about it.

During dinner, his parents asked him about his school report. He told them that he had not received it because his teacher was sick. His father did not believe him, so he picked up the phone and called the teacher, since they knew each other. The teacher told him that the boy had received his school report and that he was forty-eighth out of the class. The father was terribly disappointed in his son for lying to him. The boy admitted that he tore up the report because he was unhappy with his grade.

He was not a good student. He would go to school and spend more time playing with his friends than attending classes. Or he would pretend to go to school and study hard. By the time his parents figured out he was fooling them, the boy was already used to skipping class while his friends were in school. The boy told his father that he did not want to go back to school. The father was shocked to hear those words from a nine-year-old. The father told him that if he said that again, he would be punished, because school was very important in the life of a child. The boy went to bed and cried after his father confronted him.

The next day, the boy was found on top of a water tank. Some people from the neighborhood went to rescue him. When they got him down, he told them that his father was forcing him to go to school and that he did not want to go.

His father tried other ways to convince his son to go to school but they never worked. He even hired a part-time tutor to come to their home, in the hope that this would make him like school more. But the boy would run away when the time came for him to attend classes at home. It was terrifying to see how stubborn this boy remained.

One of the men who found the boy on top of the water tank volunteered to take the boy under his wing. The boy cried and cried. When his father asked him what was wrong, he told him that he would go back to the water tank if he was forced to go back to school. It seemed that the boy was threatening to commit suicide. His father was speechless. He told him that he could stay home and that he would go to school only if he wanted to. The father did not want to lose his son because he was his only child. He hopes that one day his son will go back to school again.

4 September, 2023