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Mbandazi (pronounced Mm-Bawn-dah-zee) Primary is a K-6 public school located in a rural area on the outskirts of Kigali, Rwanda, in the Rusororo Sector. Financially, it is a poor community in which most families are subsistence farmers.

Numbers:

21 Teachers, 1678 Students in K-6.

Challenges:

Many parents cannot provide school supplies, uniforms, or food for their children, and some children are kept home to help on the farm. Alcoholism is very present in many households, which results in children witnessing, and being victims of, domestic violence. Teachers notice that many children are emotionally drained during school as a result of family dysfunction. Classrooms are very overcrowded as the teacher to student ratio is low, and the number of classrooms is limited.

Progress:

The headmistress has been a catalyst for transformation – empowering teachers to be servant leaders, who actively implement teaching aids, values, and positive behaviour management techniques in their classrooms. Teacher multipliers are also empowering their colleagues! The increase in the quality of education is apparent as you enter each classroom. Last year, all but three students passed the final exam, and six students were promoted to the best public schools in Rwanda. Parents are engaged in the school community and regularly visit their children at school! Recently, they worked together to plant a school garden and plantation, build a soccer field and a playground, and maintain the school property.
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