Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Second Day of Production - Tumaini

We arrived back at Tumaini this morning to do more interviews.  The students conducted two more interviews with adults, and then started on interviews with children. Three children, all of whom have sponsors, were interviewed. What I mean by “sponsored” is that someone is paying the expenses for that child to attend Tumaini. Usually, sponsors are people who learn about the school because they have been in Tanzania on safari and the tour driver makes a stop at Tumaini. The sponsor commits to pay an individual child’s expenses for a year. The current price for sponsorship is $1500; that amount pays for tuition, room and board, uniforms, books and other expenses. Often, sponsors continue to sponsor the child throughout his or her time at Tumaini.  Now that there is a secondary school, that relationship can continue even longer. Adrienne Luczkow and Mr. Bayo asked us to focus the current video on sponsorship so that is what we are doing.

Among the three "children" we interviewed was a 16-year-old named Dixon who attends the new Tumaini Secondary School.   He had attended Tumaini Junior School prior to moving on to secondary school. At first, he was enrolled in a public secondary school before the new Tumaini Secondary School opened in January of 2015. In the interview, Dixon related some of the negative experiences he had had at the public school before he was able to move to Tumaini.  Dixon was at the Junior School today because he is involved in a program called, "World Leadership," that joins secondary school students from different countries together to do activities and talk about leadership. The students had spent some time together at the secondary school before coming to Karatu for a few days.  They will do a project together before the program breaks up later in the month.

One thing I haven’t explained about Tumaini yet is that it is an English-medium school. In Tanzania, the medium of instruction for the public primary schools is Kiswahili, while teaching at the secondary level is done in English.  What that means is that many children, who have had all their education in Kiswahili until that time enter secondary school at a distinct disadvantage because of the instruction in English.  In contrast, Tumaini teaches all subjects in English at the primary level.  All around the school, in fact, are signs reminding students (and teachers and staff, alike) to speak in English. Children are taught Kiswahili, as well, so they are able to read and write in their own language, but it is a single subject within the school curriculum, and not language through which other subjects are taught.

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