It was a turning point for me when I recently attended a two-week teaching programme organised by JRS in Yei for this year’s Senior Four students. The programme covered the core subjects which include English, mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology and geography. All these subjects were handled by talented teachers.
Over 150 students from six different secondary schools benefited from the programme, which is being piloted this year as a way to help students prepare for their Ugandan Certificate of Education (O-Level) exams, and in particular to address differences between schools in curriculum coverage and quality of teaching. The programme is primarily for students from JRS-supported schools, but students from other schools are welcome when places are available. Six teachers, all from local schools and selected on the basis of their qualifications, experience and reputation, conducted the classes.
All the students who attended said it was the best and most remarkable preparation programme they could imagine and improved their educational knowledge considerably. For me it was the first time in my life to see and handle practical laboratory apparatuses and chemicals in physics and chemistry. This enabled me to gain essential practical knowledge for my forthcoming final exams. The way the teachers handled the subjects was so far the best in my school life.
Over the fortnight, no teacher missed a lesson. All teachers managed their time well, unlike in my school where we sometimes spend the whole day without being taught. Having such good role models helped us students to become good time managers as the teachers did not even come a minute late and also, no student wanted to miss any part of the lessons. “With what I have learned here, I will definitely perform well in my exams!”, said one of the students at the end of the training.