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"Shule Bora" (Perfect School) - the completion of the construction and furbishment of the primary school in Kiabakari - a chance of the access to the high quality education for the rural communities of Mara Region

Kiabakari is located in Tanzania’s north-eastern Mara region, close to a highway that connects Musoma (the nearest town, with 150,000 inhabitants, 30 km from Kiabakari) with Mwanza. There are numerous reservations about the quality of teaching in the public schools there. Most of the local schools have no electricity, and may have grades with class sizes as large as 150 children. The teachers are not sufficiently prepared or lack sufficient number school supplies. Upon graduation from these public schools, many children are not even able to write their own names. According to 2010 statistics, only four out of ten children are able to read or understand simple sentences in English and Swahili upon completion of primary public school in Kiabakari. At present, less than 70 per cent of the population over the age of 15 can read or write. Completion of primary school education at a good level by a child opens the door to self-reliance and further study or work.

The current project is linked to previous development activities conducted in Kiabakari in 2007–2014. These activities were aimed at facilitating access to education for the local population through the launch of the construction of a kindergarten and a school (at present, both facilities form part of the St John Paul II Education and Formation Centre in Kiabakari). Construction of the Kiabakari primary school began in 2007. With the assistance of numerous institutions and private donors, the core and shell of the school building was completed. Then, finishing works were completed in six of its classrooms so that 200 students could study in safe conditions. The remaining school rooms (including the classroom for the seventh grade, the computer room, the teachers' cubicles adjacent to the classrooms, the assembly hall, the teachers’ room, the internal and external bathrooms, the archive, the library and reading room, the dining hall and the school shop) remain as a core and shell. The children who began their first year of schooling in 2011 started sixth grade in January 2016. Tanzanian primary schools provide education in seven grades, and thus for these children to be able to continue their education at this school, it is necessary to finish one more classroom (for senior-year students). Moreover, failure to complete the building construction within the time limit set by the municipal authorities could result in closure of the school.

"Shule Bora" (Perfect School) - the completion of the construction and furbishment of the primary school in Kiabakari - a chance of the access to the high quality education for the rural communities of Mara Region

The purpose of the project is to undertake actions that would improve the overall educational qualifications of the local community, and to thereby combat illiteracy in the Mara region, with a particular emphasis on children from poor families residing in Kiabakari and its environs. The project sought to provide adequate quality education with full access to textbooks and school supplies, the teaching of English, and the use of modern technologies.

The work scheduled under the project included finishing and equipping the school rooms necessary for the functioning of the school, constructing missing elements such as a fence around the school grounds, sidewalks and landscape architecture such as outdoor benches for students, and the planting of greenery in the immediate vicinity of the school. The project also included the installation of water, sewerage and electrical systems in the entire school building and in the toilets.

Additionally, 15 members of the school staff received topical training in the fields of student and child rights, paediatric diseases and child nutrition, and the psychology of working with children.

"Shule Bora" (Perfect School) - the completion of the construction and furbishment of the primary school in Kiabakari - a chance of the access to the high quality education for the rural communities of Mara Region

The project enabled completion of the construction of the Kiabakari primary school, and included finishing works in one classroom (for grade seven) and one computer room. Additionally, school ancillary facilities were renovated, including the library, reading room, auditorium, school office, archives, teachers’ room, internal toilets, dining hall and school shop. Freestanding toilets external to the school building (eight stalls) were also built. Moreover, the project equipped classrooms and ancillary rooms with furniture. Additionally, three training course modules were organised for the 15-member school staff.