Since the schools closed down in March, it has been very difficult for a majority of pupils living in Kibera to access online learning, due to lack of electronic gadgets and other related difficulties. Consequently, Future Stars has formulated a safe and efficient way of ensuring all students, from Pre-Primary 2 upwards, can cover the majority of learning areas whilst at home.
On August 5th, a meeting was held in school to formulate a plan that will enable the children to continue their learning whilst at home. The teachers present were able to come up with a safe method that will enable the children to keep up with the school curriculum, as much as possible, despite the lockdown.
The pupils have all been asked to report to school every Wednesday. The school will be open from 8am until 3pm with each grade reporting at a different hour (to avoid mass congregation) starting from Pre-Primary 2 and ending with Grade 6 (currently the highest class offered at Future Stars).

How does this happen?

The teachers designed a hand written assessment covering the content that was covered in term one and a little of term two for the first day of the assessments. The assessment is issued to the pupils to copy into their exercise books. This is done in a systematic way for all the grades. The pupils then take the exercise books home with them to complete schoolwork during the week.

Each pupil will leave behind one exercise book with the teachers for the drafting of the next assessment. This will help reduce the time the pupils will be in the school compound since the assessments would have already been copied out by the teachers.

What are the benefits of this plan?

This initiative will help the children grow academically and also keep them close to the school, ensuring continuity when the schools are finally allowed to reopen (hopefully January 2021). It will also raise the profile of the centre by highlighting the extra effort that is being made to assist the Future Stars pupils.

This initiative also aims to create awareness amongst the parents regarding how to engage their children on positive activities that lead to good morals and behavioural change due to the fact that Kibera as a community is not a good environment for a child to grow in without strict supervision.

Further Recommendations

There are additional plans laid down to involve all of the Future Stars pupils in extracurricular activities.

The resident children of Future Stars have begun urban farming, with kale, tomatoes and onions, on a small scale. We also have started poultry farming with the resident children. We are looking forward to incorporating the entire school as we gradually increase to a larger scale. This aims to keep the pupils occupied in positive activity, teach important and useful life skills, and also encourage a sense of responsibility.

We hope to provide some treats, such as biscuits, to encourage the children to attend and continue their education despite the restrictions that will keep schools closed for several more months.

Can you help?

Education during the pandemic does come at a cost: paying teachers, providing snacks, and ensuring the children have access to and use the appropriate hygiene measures. Hand washing in particular will be emphasised and this will significantly increase our ‘soap budget’.
Any donations will make a very real difference, especially as Chaffinch’s usual fundraising has suffered as a result of restrictions in the UK.

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