Visit to Cornwall 2010

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ACE decided to bring two Ugandan educationalists here to look at school practice in the UK. They explored various administrative areas as well as teaching. These included school management and classroom management, as well as storage of materials and use of resources.

They have selected from what they saw, and, with the help of teachers here, they have put together workshops to take back to Uganda in order to train other heads and teachers in ACE schools. This should lead to better use and care of resources, better classroom organisation and teaching, happier teachers and children, and a higher standard of education.

Whilst they were In Cornwall, some of the schools and other organisations which have supported ACE met them and got feedback as to how their hard work has helped our schools in Uganda. Hopefully this will encourage more fundraising.

They arrived in England on Monday 27th September and were here for three weeks.

Augustine and William

Augustine (left) and William

William Balibutsa is a School Inspector for the Kisoro region of Uganda and part of his remit is to oversee the primary schools which ACE supports in the area. We consult with him regularly about the projects we undertake and have always benefited from his advice and assistance.

Augustine Mbonigaba was headteacher of the primary school we support at Mukibugu for many years. Since he retired from that position he has become a director of St. Allen's School in Kisoro. He is very experienced and dependable and, as he is no longer teaching, he will be able to organise the seminars for teachers at the ACE schools on his return to Uganda.

They had a busy programme whilst they were here. They were based at St. Hilary School for the first half of their visit and also visited other local schools.

With Angela, they attended meetings of Penzance Rotary Club, Mount's Bay Rotary Club, Praze WI and Mount's Bay Missions. They had a meeting with the ACE trustees, discussing the way forward for ACE's projects, and they assisted at the collections for ACE at Morrisons supermarket. On their days off we showed them a bit of Cornwall.

Several organisations and individuals gave financial support and sponsorshop to enable this visit to take place. ACE is particularly grateful to Cornwall Branch of the National Union of Teachers, Penzance Rotary Club, Mount's Bay Rotary Club, Penzance Lions Club and Truro College Student Association, and also to Andy Nineham, Thomas Gunkel and Roger Drew.

Mon 27th Sept 4pm Arrive at Heathrow from Entebbe. Collected and driven to Cornwall.
Tue 28th Sept
Wed 29th Sept 8.30am Mount's Bay School. 4.30pm Mayor's parlour greeting in Penzance.
Thu 30th Sept 8.30am St. Hilary School until 3.30pm.
Fri 1st Oct 8.30am St. Hilary School until 3.30pm.
Sat 2nd Oct
Sun 3rd Oct 2.30pm until 5pm ACE cream tea at The Old Post Office, Newmill.
Mon 4th Oct 8.30am St. Hilary School until 3.30pm.
Tue 5th Oct 8.30am St. Hilary School until 3.30pm.
Wed 6th Oct 8.30am St. Hilary School until 3.30pm.
Thu 7th Oct 8.30am St. Hilary School until 3.30pm. 7pm Mount's Bay Missions talk at Breene Chapel.
Fri 8th Oct Morning at Alverton School. 12.45pm Penzance Rotary Club.
Sat 9th Oct
Sun 10th Oct
Mon 11th Oct Humphry Davy School all day. 7pm Praze WI.
Tue 12th Oct 9.30am St. Maddern School until 11.30. 1pm Nancledra School.
Wed 13th Oct 8.40am Cape Cornwall School. 1.30pm - 2.30pm Penwith College. 6pm Pendeen School for Harvest Festival in aid of ACE.
Thu 14th Oct 9.30am Trythall School. 1.15pm St. Erth School. 6.30pm Mount's Bay Rotary Club.
Fri 15th Oct Morrisons supermarket collection. St. Hilary School to say goodbye. 4pm Meeting with ACE trustees.
Sat 16th Oct Morrisons supermarket collection.
Sun 17th Oct
Mon 18th Oct Driven to Heathrow. 9.15pm Depart for Entebbe.

Visit to the Mayor of Penzance

With the Mayor

William and Augustine, pictured with the Mayor of Penzance, Councillor Jan Ruhrmund, with ACE Chairman, Angela Peake, and Councillor Phil Rendle

They were welcomed to Penzance by the mayor and several of the members of Penzance Town Council.

Augustine as Mayor  
In the Mayor's Parlour Augustine got to try on the Mayor's formal regalia .....
William in robes  
..... and William tried an historic outfit too.

Meeting Our MP and Vicar

With Andrew George
They met our local MP, Andrew George .....
With Tim Hawkins
..... and local vicar, Tim Hawkins .....
At Gulval Church  
..... and they attended services at Gulval Church.

School Visits

For the first part of their stay, Augustine and William were based at St. Hilary Primary School.....


St. Hilary pupils

..... and they were presented with some gifts on their final day there.

St. Hilary gifts
This picture shows William with some of the pupils in St. Hilary Church for a rehearsal of the school harvest festival.  
At St. Hilary Church
William presented a video of the schools in Uganda at St. Erth School.
William gives a lesson
Here is Augustine with pupils at St. Erth.
Augustine at St. Erth

At Mount's Bay School they enjoyed lunch in the school canteen.

During the visit the school presented a cheque for £1,298 to ACE funds.

Lunch at Mounts Bay

Out and About

William and Augustine
At the weekends they enjoyed some free time and have been taken out. One of their first trips was to the Minack Theatre.
Augustine on Marazion beach

Augustine got his first ever close view of the sea.

Augustine at Lanyon Quoit
They visited some of Cornwall's oldest attractions .....
Eden Project biomes
..... as well as some newer ones.
In the Rainforest Biome  

They felt at home in the steamy Tropical Biome at The Eden Project.

looking north from Trencrom  
They climbed to the top of Trencrom Hill. They were lucky to be there on a beautifully clear day when they could see Trevose Head, St. Agnes Beacon and Godrevy to the north .....
Looking south from Trencrom  
..... right around to Penzance, St. Michael's Mount and the Lizard to the south.
At St. Ives harbour
They visited the length of St. Ives Bay, starting at St. Ives .....
At Godrevy

..... and going as far as Godrevy ......

Seals at Godrevy

..... where they saw some animals that they had never seen before.

Morrisons Collection
They helped with a collection for ACE at Morrison's supermarket.
Judith Augustine Charlotte  

They have also been entertained in the homes of various ACE supporters. Here Augustine is with Judith and Charlotte Nicholls.

Judith and Charlotte have both visited the schools in Uganda.

First Teachers' Workshop Takes Place in Kisoro

Following their visit to Cornwall, Augustine and William have held the first seminar for teachers and headteachers of the ACE primary schools. It was held on Saturday 19th February 2011 in Kisoro Town Council Hall and was attended by 65 teachers and 7 headteachers. This was over 75% attendance.

Teachers of Nyarusunzu school did not attend because of the long distance of travel. William and Augustine have arranged to go there themselves soon and hold a similar workshop for them.


William reported -

The teachers were told about the history of ACE's involvement and they discussed how the schools had benefited from the charity in detail, school by school. To most of the teachers, this was new information. They were also informed of our visit to the UK and also told how funds to help our schools are raised.

All this was intended to show the teachers that some people in the UK are working very hard to help educate our children and a lot has been achieved. What we must now do is to continue to improve on our academic performance standards.

We made a baseline assessment. The teachers outlined the problems each school had, ranging from poor attendance of both teachers and pupils to lack of sufficient instructional and resource management, not excluding poor assessment management of pupils' learning.

Some of the teachers  

We discussed activities to improve on our standards. Out of the list of many gaps identified, it was agreed that they be prioritised as follows -

1. Management of registers of pupils by marking them daily, without missing, and making follow up of the children who absent themselves regularly.

2. Having daily informal morning staff meetings to clear off any eventualities that can lead to the children missing lessons.

3. Setting standards in every school that will check proper utilisation of instructional and resource management.

4. Setting a level of attainment and emphasising the management of homework and other remedial instructions.

Baby came too   It was agreed that all this should start immediately. More would be done after harmonising the above.
Class of teachers  

The Way Forward

The teachers agreed -

  • to be presentable and disciplined and to stick to the teachers' code of conduct
  • to meet again like this in April and evaluate themselves together with their headteachers and the Inspector
  • that the Inspector visits every school at least once a fortnight
  • that we think of prizes to give to teachers and headteachers who perform well to create a spirit of competition
  • that we revive the sports activities by competing for the Eden Cup
  • that the education office does not remove teachers from their schools

In the final remarks on behalf of the teachers, the headmaster of Gitenderi Primary School expressed the importance of the workshop and requested this to be happening periodically until ACE schools pick up a culture where good standards can be sustained.

Otherwise, on my behalf as an Inspector of schools, I got an opportunity to express to them what is expected of them.

The cost of the workshop was provided by ACE, using the remaining money that had been donated for William and Augustine's visit to Cornwall. The trustees feel that this has been an exercise which will greatly benefit the schools. We are very grateful to the organisations and individuals who donated funds to make it possible.



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