Parents and guardians of the newly admitted primary five pupils at the URDT Girls’ School have appreciated URDT for making education easy and affordable through providing the pupils with not only free education but also learning requirements.
The URDT Girls’ school (URDTGS) started in 2000 to fill a need for relevant education for disadvantaged, talented girls that is linked to development. The school aims at developing a pool of value driven, educated female leaders who are committed to take up transformation roles in their homes and beyond. Whereas for many, children are only consumers of resources, URDT believes that a child at schooling age is a resource waiting to be unleashed.
URDT started the school as it believes that empowered young women are key to transforming rural communities into vibrant rural economies. However, often their potential genius is not awakened, which is the reason why pupils and students at URDTGS are taught to become change agents in their homes and communities and as such generate role model homes that have sustainable income and health while studying and preparing for future leadership and university education at URDT’s African Rural University or elsewhere.
The school uses the 2-generation approach whereby students and her parents learn together, develop a shared vision for their home, analyze their current situation, apply systems thinking and team learning, plan for actionable steps together and learn functional adult literacy skills to attain their aspirations. They are supported to develop role model farm enterprises that act as centers of learning in the villages and to participate in the development of democratic local governance practices.
Some of the parents together with their children drawing their family visions on paper
Education at URDT is continuum, right away from P.5 – S.4 then Institute if one does not want to go for A’ level, lastly to the University. A maximum of 35 pupils are admitted in P.5 every year depending on their socio-economic situation, geographical location, academic performance and finally talents and conduct.
This year, a total of 33 pupils were admitted and attended a one-week orientation workshop that was held in the Multi-purpose Hall at the URDTGS from Monday, 13th to Friday, 17th February 2023 together with their parents/guardians.
During the workshop, Ms. Akampurira Patience, the Headteacher URDTGS primary section said that parents need not to worry about uniforms for their pupils as they are going to be provided to them by the school through donors, free of charge. “In the past, parents used to pay for their children’s uniforms which would cost over 100,000/= but this year, everything is going to be provided and you will not have to pay a single coin,” Akampurira said
The Headteacher, Patience Akampurira distributing the new uniforms to pupils
On hearing the Headteacher’s words, all the parents were happy and grateful for the great offer that eased their worries as some of them could not afford to pay the whole amount at once.
One of the parents, Tukahigwa Juliet says she has been relieved of the burden of looking for money to buy school uniform since she did not have it at the moment. “I am so happy that I can no longer worry about where to get money for uniform from. I was going to let her be wearing the old school uniform she was given on joining as I look for money to buy her own new uniform but URDT has saved me the trouble,” said Tukahigwa
Mwebesa Justus, also one of the parents present says he is glad that he has finally got a start for the vision he drafted with his daughter during the workshop after being saved from buying a school uniform for her. “I am very glad that the money that I was going to spend on the uniform has been saved. I am going to use it to buy maize and bean seeds to plant as part of our vision 2027,” Mwebesa explained.
The School Community Development Officer, Ms. Sunday Sylvia urged the parents and guardians to channel the money that was supposed to be used for purchasing these uniforms into the visions they made with their daughters rather than spending it on other non-profitable things. “Since the school is giving the pupils free uniforms today, I encourage you to put that money in the projects that will help you fulfill the visions you have made together. I do not want to visit your homes next time and find nothing yet you did not pay anything at school,” said Sylvia.
The parents/guardians together with the pupils were later taken on a campus tour around URDT, including the classrooms, laboratories, Demonstration farms, Mini Estate Processing Enterprise (MEPE), Kagadi-Kibale Community Radio (KKCR), as well as the homestead 2035, and also later participated in games with the P.6 pupils.
P.5 (in school uniform dresses) and P.6 in school jerseys competing during games time