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Years of flooding could be over for a Phnom Penh high school

Years of flooding could be over for a Phnom Penh high school

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CPP boss Chea Sim has partnered with a Korean firm to rebuild a local high school that has endured years of persistent flooding

Photo by: HENG CHIVOAN

Chruoy Changvar High School under water.

A HIGH school in Phnom Penh's Russey Keo district will be rescued from the ravages of seasonal flooding by a remodeling plan expected to finish in 2010, a school official told the Post Thursday.

Chruoy Changvar High School has endured massive flooding each rainy season for several years, said Tek Sim Eth, the school's director.

"It has been hard on our students for the last four years since local villagers filled in ponds near the school. Whenever it rains, the school looks like a lake," he said.

"Now, we have started rebuilding half of the school, while students continue to use the other half, and we hope to finish by early 2010," he said.

The rebuilding project is being funded by Cambodian People's Party chief Chea Sim, who is sponsoring the construction of 23 additional rooms for the school, he said.

Tek Sim Eth added that the work is being done by a Korean company, under the direction of Chea Sim.

Constant flooding at the school has disrupted classes for years and proved a constant irritation to students and teachers, many of whom must help pump water from classrooms so studies can convene.

"My school always gets flooded whenever it rains," said grade nine student Thong Navith, who added that he never wears uniforms because they would be soiled by the dirty water.

DESPITE THE FLOODING, WE HAVE TRIED TO KEEP

CLASSES GOING.

"Sometimes, we run away from school when it starts to rain, and the next day we cannot study because the teachers are pumping water out of our classes," he said.

"Despite the flooding, we have tried to keep classes going. But when too much water comes in, we have to stop for the safety of the students," he said.

Tek Sim Eth said about US$150,000 had been spend pumping sand into the school, but the total cost of the remodel was unknown.

"We will need to struggle a bit more before we have a nice school, but it is not so long until 2010," he said.

"After that, we will be fine."

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