The 2017 National Education Infrastructure Management System report indicated that of the 23,577 public primary and secondary schools in South Africa, there were:
- 5,175 schools without water or with unreliable water supply
- 68 schools with no toilets
- 9,203 schools with pit latrines
- 7,105 schools with VIPs
- 2,912 schools with septic tank systems
- 8,574 schools with flush toilets on municipal systems
This indicates some of the very significant challenges being faced by schools in relation to water and sanitation. One way of addressing this to investigate alternative sanitation models, such as the use of composting toilets, aqua privies and onsite biological systems. These alternatives avoid problems associated with flush toilet (such as large-scale water consumption) and pit latrine (the risk of contaminating groundwater) systems currently used in many schools and have some valuable advantages. Please feel free to contact me on studies, tools and papers being developed in this area.