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20/05/2014

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Preamble

This is not a scientific report but a general update of what has been and is happening within TAS project implementation.  The outcome period is open however most of the impact is being experienced last year to date. Its not 100% all the changes is because of TAS intervention.

The report is a mix-up of field observation during my school visits, hard realities/facts and what they say; parents, students/pupils and other stakeholders. Briefly and in bullet form the report will bring out main changes/outcomes, outstanding challenges and their possible intervention planned activities and still some grey areas.

Just a quick look of us here!!!!

Out-comes/changes.

  • Initiation of cost- cutting activities by school teams;  eg. Ikathima primary school after launch of boarding program they took opportunity of their huge land and aggressively planted crops to subsidize cost of boarding.
  • Over whelming enrolment increase in TAS supported schools. Eg. This year Usueni registered 91 students in F1; traditionally they register 40-45 students entry! 6 new girls joined  Ikathima primary this term! (Ikathima primary becoming like rescue centre for girls!)
  • TAS Lst outcomes inspiration to other schools. Eg. When chairpersons of new KWS PASMAP project visited Ikathima primary schools, two schen went back and innovatively started boarding facilities. They converted classroom into boarding facility by night and during day same room serves as classroom.
  • Reduced community hostility; in some communities eg. Boka it was hard to take a picture of pupils or community member (they would either run away or unfriendly attach you). This now is gone and both the community members and pupils they even request for a picture.
  • Popularity of the boarding schools increasing and pupils coming from other schools for bench marking. Eg. Ikathima this year received 6 students. They will study in the school ( as boarders) and finally will go back to their respective schools to do their final exam.
  • Entrepreneurship concept programs taking place eg  Usueni girls as started business club; 45 students. The cub will coach the other interested students on business and entrepreneurship techniques (acting as ToTs). This term they will host a team from UK College of business to enhance this concept. 

Mivukoni secondary school they have wildlife club having poultry keeping plan.  The program will be fully managed by student with a business teacher as their patron.

  • Increased parents participation in most schools ( TAS supported schools) eg. High turn up of parents to schools events.

Parents availing their local contribution(sand and ballast) even before project is funded like the case of Ikathima  and Usueni girls while building their respective staff units.

Up coming events (Period;  by the end of the year 2014)

  • Erecting appropriate use of three faced information display boards in the seven schools around Kora Nation Park; target- by the end May 2014.
  • Usueni girls to host Uk team from NMEBC – 3 teachers. This is a partnership program between the  College and Usueni schools . Main focus – Business and entrepreneurship.  Stay period at the school ; 25th May to 1st June.
  • Possibility of work experience program at Mivukoni secondary students. The BOG has approved this and the next step in general approval by the parents during school/Parents AGM.
  • Appropriately aligning the TAS school operations with the new county Governments. This is on going though there is some overlapping role of county and national governments on management of education systems.
  • LST secretaries/external trustees come-together at Nairobi. This is for experience sharing.  Normally the occasion is hosted by one of the Trustees. Harriet – the main convener. This is earmarked to take place early June.
  • LST team experience sharing come together. This will be hosted in one of the schools. Preferred to take place on weekend to avoid interference with learning. Target- before end October.

 

Challenges

  • Head Teachers Transfers. Especially for the good performing head teachers. Some time this interferes with consistency of the projects implementation. Option; possibility of agreeing with Ministry for a teacher to stay at the school for a certain period of time. During that the period the H/T to nurture other teachers for purposes of the project continuity.
  • Re-curing drought.  This season approx. 90% crop failure. Most of parents depend on farm produce for food and source of income. The nearest time they will have rain fed farm produce is December. The situation is becoming more aggravated by the current economic hard time in the country. Option; School feeding program to be supported by the government. This will sustain pupils in school. If they miss a meal at home then they can have one in school.
  • Poor net signals in some schools. This has made it not possible for some program like ICT to be effective.  Communication to school partner schools especially in UK is effectively through emails. Sometimes one has to travel to a particular sport to access signal. Option; improve signal by service provider ( this depends on market value/situation analysis of the provider; its business).
  • Chronic teaching staff shortage in all schools! Every school has to innovately know how to make best use of what they have (teachers). In some cases quality is compromised.  This is a country-wide challenge!

Grey area.

  • Policy on phasing out school’s support without necessarily loosing contact. When and how?! Some schools possibly need to run on their own and become model schools for others(new and neighbour schools).  Do we leave the school completely or keep loose contact?
  • Possibility of Schools becoming Hub of development in the rural areas especially primary schools( digital village). Can ICT take us there? Can the schools become centre for community enlightment? Can the schools become unifying system for rural development?....