News from Rumbek

Teachers go back to school

Education is important for a country’s development and good teachers are the backbone of a strong education system. In Rumbek, many people are not motivated to be teachers because of low salaries, overcrowded classrooms and insufficient training.

To promote teaching as a profession in our context, Loreto Rumbek has been supporting our primary school teacher trainees in achieving professional certifications.

In early 2019, Peter Baak and Moses Matoch, two of our teacher trainees commenced formal teacher training at the Solidarity Teacher Training College (STTC) in Yambio, South Sudan. This college is run by Solidarity with South Sudan, an organization made up of religious institutes of men and women working to establish and develop teacher and health training in South Sudan.

Through scholarships from Solidarity, every year, Loreto Rumbek is able to send 2 to 3 teacher trainees like Peter and Moses to STTC, to learn skills and tools to improve their teaching. Moses and Peter have recently returned to Rumbek after completing their teacher training and receiving their certificates. This is a significant accomplishment as many primary school teachers in our area have not received formal teacher training and are not certified.

Moses expressed his excitement about attending STTC, “I am very happy to complete teacher training and I am ready to share what I have learned with other people, especially students. During the training, I learned a lot about child development, skills of teaching and more of how to conduct yourself as a teacher.

When I returned back to my community, I was welcomed with joy as the people already saw the positive change in me. The community is happy to see more of their children becoming teachers. As a teacher my goal is to bring light to the people of my country and the world at large.”

The Loreto Rumbek administration congratulated Moses and Peter on their achievement and presented the newly trained teachers with bicycles as an acknowledgement of their hard work. Sr Orla, the Director of Loreto Rumbek noted, “I am very proud, they have worked hard.”

Mr. Yuga
, the headteacher of Loreto Girls Secondary School added, “I hope that they will encourage their colleagues to go for training as well, to become professionals in their fields. We are very grateful for their efforts.” The bicycles will provide an essential means of transportation as the teachers live about 9km away from the Loreto Rumbek compound.

Peter Baak related his gratitude, “I am glad to have been a part of the people that completed teacher training and I can proudly say now that I am a trained teacher unlike before when I didn’t attend any training. I learned during my training – that teachers are role models to the society and they carefully need to think their actions through. I wish to pass all that I have learned to the students in the most appropriate way possible. I am grateful to receive a bicycle as a gift for graduating from the STCC and it is going to help me a lot when I start going back to school to teach. My goal is to promote better education to the children and anyone willing to learn for the good of our country.”

Abraham Dok and Emmanuel Gai are two primary school teacher trainees that hope to someday achieve the same accomplishments as Peter and Moses. Abraham and Emmanuel recently started their teacher training studies at STCC.

However, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, STCC was closed and students were enrolled in an online learning program. Due to a lack of internet access and electricity in their homes, Emmanuel and Abraham are using the Loreto Rumbek campus as their learning site. They are working hard and we are happy to be able to support them in attaining their goals towards creating a stronger education system in our community.

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