Ranwadi students unhappy over processed food

Over 300 school students of Ranwadi Church of Christ College in South Pentecost have stopped attending school because they are unhappy about the food being served there.

VBTC was informed the students were refusing to eat processed food like rice and canned meat and noodles.

Chief Luke Vargo from Wali Village in South Pentecost says parents were unhappy to hear reports of the walk-out when their children returned from school on Thursday.

He says the school could have avoided the showdown if it had worked closely with communities in South Pentecost to arrange the supply of fresh local food for the students.

“In South Pentecost, we have so much local food like taro, cassava, cabbage and vegetables which could have been supplied to support the school,” Chief Virgo said.

He says the school principal should have given communities a small amount of money to provide locally-grown food to the school.

Ranwadi Church of Christ College Principal, Caulton Bule, says the school has large outstanding debts from unpaid fees in 2020, which has affected its ability to buy fresh food.

He says some parents have also not yet paid First and Second Term fees for their children this year.

He says a Government subsidy will assist when it arrives but the school is appealing to parents on Pentecost, Ambae and other islands who have children studying at Ranwadi College to pay their children’s school fees.

“Parents need to pay these fees to support the school,” Mr Bule said.

“Many of the children are attending school but their fees have not been paid.”

Mr Bule says his school is also still recovering from Cyclone Harold damage in 2020.

He requested the students who had left school in protest, to return on Sunday to prepare to sit their mid-year exams next week.

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