Traditional educational systems around the world have adapted since the spread of COVID-19 began in 2019, and in Uganda things are no different. February usually marks the beginning of a new term for all students in Uganda, but due to necessary COVID-19 precautions only the primary seven grade level kids are currently attending in person classes at the Amahoro Community School. Primary seven is the last level of primary school; they can continue to secondary school once they are able to pass all of their exams.
Most all students who are not studying for these essential exams have stayed home since March of last year. For the children living at the Amahoro Children’s Home, they have been able to continue to learn due in a few different ways due to their proximity to the Amahoro Community School. At this point the government has said that the primary six class can resume school on March 1st, 2021, and we are looking forward to getting more children back to school safely.
Uganda has developed guidelines, known as standard operating procedures (SOPS) for schools in response to COVID-19, including
– everyone is required to wear a mask
– social distancing is practiced
– hands are washed regularly
– temperatures of students and teachers are taken each morning and evening
In order for any school to operate in Uganda, they must now prove to the Ministry of Education that they are following all the SOPS. Only then can a certificate of operation be issued. The Amahoro Community School has been following these SOPS and in addition they have been educating students, teachers, and the neighboring community about COVID-19 and how to stay safe.
Like many places around the world, many people in the community of Matugga (the area surrounding the school) have lost jobs due to COVID-19. People from the community of Matugga continue to ask for support from the Amahoro Children’s Home to meet everyday needs and Amahoro has been a beacon of light for the community. In addition to supporting vulnerable children we are committed to strengthening communities as well.
Our friends in Uganda have had to make many changes in the past year. While it has not been easy for anybody, it is reassuring that our friends at Amahoro are continuing to support their surrounding community, educate others on how to stay safe and prepare the primary seven class to start secondary school.
Yours in Education,
Lindsey S. H. Morgan
The College of William & Mary, ’17
W&M School of Education, MAEd, ’18