Tag Archives: World Teachers’ Day

Sunday: Community Innovator

Posted on by Sophie Hicks



Jan 2016 7

Sunday is only 22 years old, yet already he is the headteacher of Lacek Community School in Nwoya district! To hold such an important position at such a young age is testimony to both his considerable talents as a teacher and to how highly he is considered in the surrounding community. But Sunday is not just a Headteacher. He is also participating in the Teacher Changemaker network, which we coordinate in partnership with STIR Education in Northern Uganda! So far, Sunday has implemented an incredibly successful Village Savings and Loans Association in Lacek School (they have saved an impressive 3,775,400 since May) which is also helping to bring parents closer to the school to monitor their children’s education, improving student motivation and performance. Read on to discover how Sunday is changing the way the local community views education and impacting on the next generation at Lacek Community School!

My parents were escaping from the Lord’s Resistence Army, so I was born in Gulu. But our original homeland is in Kinene. We moved back to Kinene in 2006 when the war ended. I was 13 years old. I have only 3 brothers without any girls. My mother gave birth to 4 girls but they all passed away. There were only 4 boys left. I have four half brothers and sisters from my fathers second wife. We all live together in Kinene. My father had many wives, almost 11. He is 80 years old now.

Teaching became interesting to me because of a certain teacher in my primary, called Mr Laloo. That teacher really made me who I am. I struggled to learn English, so he put a lot of work into teaching me how to speak and write well. I liked the way he taught me, and I promised to myself I would become a teacher.

_MG_0854Being part of the Teacher Changemaker network made me realise that the problem in our schools is parent engagement. It touches me. There is a lack of parent engagement in these communities – parents have very negative attitudes towards education. I saw that many were not able to pay their children in school. I sat down with the School Management Committees and asked, which is the best way we can help these parents? I decided to bring the Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA), which other localities are doing successfully. When they save money for 2 months, that money alone is able to pay the school fees for their children. So I decided to mobilize parents. Many parents joined me. Every week they come and save their money in the pool. So far they have saved 3,775,400 (since May 2015).

Children are getting benefits from their parents being in the VSLA. Their parents can borrow money and pay them, buy for them uniform, the scholastic materials. Also, the parents are able to monitor their children, whether they are in the class, whether they are learning. They first move around all the school compound checking what is wrong, what is good, and they feedback later.

DSC09377In our culture, when you are a teacher, people prefer to be like you, because teachers are able to make unknown known. So people take teachers as the most important thing for the community. The change makers. Whenever there are any problems they first consult the teacher. During village meetings, I am always the chief’s guest when they are making bylaws. I help them to decide which ways to manage the schools and build the community. And when we are making school rules, we invite the chiefs to help. So when the child is not at school, we can give a phone call to the chief to inform him about the problem within his area of service.

I am getting some great advice from the network, like its OK to make mistakes. For us we take mistakes as a very bad thing. When we make mistakes in the Ugandan education system, people do not like it. But when I see anyone making mistakes, I just help them, and do not tell them off. The network always tells us that through mistakes, you can learn.

_MG_1272The part of the network that has motivated me a lot is friendship. Before, I didn’t know any of the other teachers in Nwoya district who are now in the network. I speak with my friend Gino (a pre-primary teacher at Purongo Hill Primary School) by phone almost daily. We just call each other and share the things from our day.

In the future, after going for my ECD diploma, I’m hoping to be a tutor and train teachers in Early Childhood Development. I can see myself so much specialised in the ECD because I understand young children’s behaviour.

My daughter, she is very stubborn! She is around 2 years old.
At around 1 ½ years, she was also able to speak. She acquired language very early. I play with her everyday, even if she is not understanding everything I say. She is called Akello Charity Hope. She loves playing, she plays so much. When I reach home in the evening, we sing songs together. I will arrive and she will immediately come to me to sing songs, to speak funny things. In the future I want her to be like me – a teacher.


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World Teachers’ Day – Celebrations Ugandan style!

Posted on by Sophie Hicks

Mattress prizeOn the 5th of October every year, World Teachers’ Day is held to honour the hard work and dedication of teachers all across the globe. And Anaka, a town in the Nwoya district of Northern Uganda, wasn’t about to miss out on the celebrations! This year, the town council organised an awards ceremony to allow the local community to celebrate the achievements of its teachers, while also raising awareness of the vital contribution that teachers make to education and development. During the ceremony, the resident district commissioner presented awards to certain teachers who had exhibited excellent teaching performance. Prizes included a bike and a mattress – practicality always comes first in Uganda!

World Teachers' DayAfrican Revival’s Early Childhood Development (ECD) Programme Officer, Maxwell Kinyera, attended the celebrations and interviewed some of the teachers themselves, whose commitment to their role is the backbone of the nation’s education system. Read Maxwell’s interviews below, in which the teachers reveal how they celebrated World Teachers’ Day and what they hope for their pupils and school in the future, and offer some words of advice for Newly Qualified Teachers all over the world!


Florence, aged 33, is a teacher at St. Luke Primary School in Nwoya district. To celebrate world teachers’ day, she prepared her children to present a poem. In the future, she wants her pupils to become responsible members of the community they live in, while she wants her school to be a centre for academic excellence. Florence has undergone two teacher trainings; refresher training on learning aids development and training on child protection. She believes teachers’ training should focus on developing teachers holistically so that the teachers should be able to produce children who are all rounded citizens. She welcomed and encouraged teachers out there who have just finished college to join the profession with all their heart even if the pay is small.


To celebrate World Teachers’ Day, Omona, a teacher at Anaka P.7 School, prepared her pupils to present welcome songs and dances to entertain the guests. In the future, she wants these pupils to have better lives through good jobs. In order to achieve this, she hopes for better classrooms and academic performance in her school. Omona received two trainings organised by African Revival. She added that the training helped her to develop a growth mind-set and become a better teacher. According to her thinking, teachers’ training should focus on academic and adolescent sexual reproductive health and rights. To encourage other teachers across the world who have just finished training, she said they should have positive attitude towards teaching. She appealed to them to prepare fully.

Mr Patel riding his new bike!

Mr. Patel is the Head-teacher of Purongo Hill Primary School, who was voted the best head teacher in the district (and as a prize received a bike – which he can be seen riding in the photo!). He contributed money towards the World Teachers’ Day celebration and he was among the organising committee for the district level celebration. Mr Patel holds a diploma in primary education and several on-job trainings related to his functions. He thinks teachers’ training should focus on attitude change and curriculum delivery, and encourages newly qualified teachers to love their profession and be committed teachers. He added that through hard work they can make them stand out from the crowd and be recognized by others. When teaching, Mr Patel enjoys being orderly and giving facts and career guidance to the learners. In the future, he wants his pupils to work hard to become better members of the society, taking up leadership positions and even replacing them in the teaching profession. He wants his school to be the best, and a model school where people and other schools come to learn from.

Interviews and photos by Maxwell Kinyera, Early Childhood Development (ECD) Programme Officer at African Revival.

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