TEACH - Targeting Educational Advancement for Children
Muko High School
In 2017, the Diocese of Kigezi asked ACT to partner in the administration of Muko High School. ACT agreed to the partnership and The U.S. TEACH Team and the Board of Governors in Uganda (school board) was formed to begin the administration of Muko High School. A flurry of activity began in December, 2017 - hiring a Headmaster, a Deputy Headmaster, a Director of Studies, and a Bursar (Treasurer); reorganizing ACT staff to provide supervision and assistance with managing incoming grants and gifts; making significant physical renovations to the school; and, of course, planning academic innovations. Classes began in February, 2018.
Many changes have been made to the campus to improve the learning and for safety of the students. Pictured above is the water system, designed and installed by a Kenyan company to provide safe drinking water throughout the year - even in drought. Midland Rotary contributed to this project. The concrete floors throughout the campus have been redone and a ledge outside the buildings provided. New shutters, new individual desks (instead of 3-4 students at one), classrooms and dormitories and the entire outside of the school newly painted. Soon, new roofing will be installed paid for by the Old Boys/Old Girls (alumni) organization of the school. The PTA has re-energized in their support of the school.
ACT is focused on supporting the teaching staff in every way possible. Members of the Travel Team in February 2019, provided some training in Basic Mental Health and Teaching Methodologies. The teachers also brainstormed their challenges and ideas and we are working on those! We provided textbooks to every student in two classes for the first time ever. We plan to purchase more textbooks for all the classes. Equipment such as globes, maps, microscopes and more were prioritized by the teachers and we supplied those. Currently, we are asking the teachers to tell us more of what they need and want to learn and we will work together to provide it.
Muko High School Empowerment Scholarships - In the past, there were work-study students who worked on the grounds of the school to help with their tuition since they were destitute. This created a “class system” within the student body so we have raised money to provide full scholarships, called Empowerment Scholarships, for these students and they no longer have to work and be treated differently than the other students. It costs about $300 per year for room, board and tuition per student.
Maverick Leadership Scholarships - These Scholarships were initiated in 2015 with the inspiration of wanting to cultivate leadership in the country of Uganda. This scholarship is named in memory of Greg Peterson, whose nickname was “Maverick“, because of his charismatic, take-charge leader personality. The aim of the scholarship is to support promising young people in Muko Sub-County through educational opportunities. These scholars apply and are selected for their potential merit and leadership not because of need. The hope is that these young people, once educated, will affect changes in their communities by providing leadership and community organizing.
That hope has already been realized! Judith Tukahirwe, our very first scholar, has graduated from her nursing program with a degree certificate in midwifery and has been hired as a member of the ACT MukoHOPE staff in Uganda managing the sponsored orphans and their health as well as providing leadership of the HEAL program. Since its inception, four students have received this scholarship and are attending school or have graduated. Because every student is unique and has special gifts, the applicants can choose to go to a particular vocational school or university.