URDT Girls’ School uses the 2 generation approach whereby students and their parents learn together, develop a shared vision for their home, analyze their current situation, apply systems thinking, team learning, plan together and learn new skills.
Alongside the national curriculum, the students get ‘change agent’ training to generate sustainable income, health, family cooperation, and peace at home while they study. The students transfer their newly gained skills through back-home projects; educative theatre, workshops and radio programmes.
The URDTGS aims to develop a pool of value-driven, visionary leaders who are committed to taking up transformation roles in their homes and communities.
Many children are only consumers of resources, for URDT the child is a resource waiting to be unleashed.
The school started in 2000 to fill a need for education that is linked to development and women empowerment. URDT beliefs that educated young women are key to transforming rural poor communities into vibrant, sustainable rural economies.
The URDT students come from poor backgrounds and are committed to developing their homes while she studies and gets prepared for future leadership.
Although the Ugandan Government provides universal primary and secondary education, their schools are poorly equipped to produce functionally literate, principled, entrepreneurial and responsible citizens and to take care of girl specific needs.
Besides the Ugandan National Curriculum, the school offers a comprehensive programme that enhances a diverse range of skills and shapes the learners’ character to become all-round and value-driven transformational leaders. Below more details:
1) Students are trained to provide leadership in back home projects such as sustainable agricultural practices, commercial farming, agro-processing, environmental protection, use of appropriate technologies and community development. This is done through workshops, debates, essay writing, sports competitions, various clubs, science fairs, music, dance, and drama.
2) Students transfer their newly gained competencies through tailor-made parents workshops, back-home projects; popular theatre, radio programmes on URDT’ community radio and collaborative projects with URDT’s other educational institutions.
3) The school emphasizes the importance of science subjects and fine arts because it enhances analytical thinking, discipline, and creativity.
4) The school also supports students to develop model farm enterprises that act as centers of learning in the villages and to participate in local governance practices.
The Headteachers of the Primary and Secondary school sections are responsible for the day to day running of the school. They work with a team of about 20 teaching and non-teaching staff. URDT’s Board of Governors oversees the operations and set policies.
The school has good working relationships with the local authorities, Foundation for African Women Educationists Uganda chapter (FAWE-U), KSCON, NOGAMU, Straight Talk Foundation, Uganda Red Cross and UNICEF-U. It gets more financial support from Charities based in Uganda, the Netherlands, and the USA.
At the organizational level:
1) URDT has established a fully-fledged primary and secondary school;
2) A co-curriculum that enables the girl-child to become a change agent. The students learned to do self-discovery, they have self-confidence and a broad range of technical skills;
3) The school started with 60 students. Now each academic year it educates 250 students from upper primary (P5) to secondary advanced level (S6) and works with about 1500 home members and over 200 communities;
4) The school is working out modalities to integrated the 2-generation approach in the 2 URDT community schools;
5) In 2003, the District Inspector of School declared URDTGS a model school of Kibaale district due to its quality and relevant education;
6) The school won awards from FAWE-U (2002); European Commission-U (2006); National Book Trust (2003/5/7) and Tumaini Award (2011) and Teach A Man to Fish Award (2012).
7) The school has won most annual netball and volleyball competitions of Kibaale District (2004/13).
At student and home level:
1) The students and parents appreciate that education is linked to action necessary to organize her home and build partnerships with her parents for economic and social transformation;
2) The girls’ academic results in national exams are good compared to local and Kampala based school
3) The students caused visible changes at home and community level:
- Over 85% improved their incomes, farms and health status. More than 90% of the students’ siblings are now going to school;
- 95% family members have a shared vision, plan together and work towards long term prosperity and peace;
- Family cooperation has improved, gender equality is addressed and domestic violence has reduced;
- The school’s outreach programme reached over 15,000 community members and 1.5 million listeners.
- By actively involving the parents, we have narrowed the knowledge gap between the 2 generations i.e. parents and their children.
- Over 85% are food secure; they have adequate food in terms of quantity, quality and safety; they eat three meals per day and have made health a fundamental choice.
- About 75% of the homes access and use clean water for cooking, drinking, washing utensils and general body care.
- Over 90% alumnae are either working or are students at tertiary level
- The school has pioneered and inspired chess which is a mental science game to over five schools in Bunyoro