January, 2010 — Ben Tumuheirwe proudly reports there was special celebration of all stakeholders, parents, guardians, local government leaders and pupils when the National Primary Leaving Examination results showed that kids graduating from our New Times Primary School at KLAC were the best in UGSchoolbookRubanda County, with the lead graduates having scores comparable to those of the best schools in all of Uganda. This is an outstanding achievement for a school that is only two years old. Clearly, the leaders and teachers in Kishanje are doing something right.
For 15 years, Uganda has had a program of Universal Primary Education where virtually every child can go to primary school for free through sixth grade. To progress beyond primary, students must take qualifying exams and once in secondary school, must pass year-end exams to progress to the next level. Most kids do not progress beyond Primary largely because the learning level is low; there too many kids for too few teachers. Thus, when Juna Amagara began thinking about orphan care, it became clear the ministry would need to start its own schools. New Times began in two small rented buildings Kishanje as the Learning Advancement Center was rising out of the earth.
First as a day care center with kindergarten, it soon outgrew its space. Today the school sits high on a hill with multiple buildings and all primary grades. With manageable class sizes and hand-picked teachers, we’ve seen kids who were lost in public schools transformed into fully-engaged, hard-working students. We knew the kids were learning but the Primary Leaving Exams showed us just how well tghey were doing. Congratulations to everyone at New Times.