Gordon and Angela Atkinson, founding Trustees, self-funded a visit to Timboni School in October 2018 to see how work was progressing in a number of different areas. This is their report.
Our most important ‘bring home message’ is that the school is doing really well.
Teaching and Learning:
The amount and quality of teaching is continuing to improve and is having a very real and tangible positive impact. The pupils are motivated and eager to learn; the teaching staff are equally motivated and keen to teach.
We met the new Head Teacher and all of the teachers at least briefly. We spent much more time with the four “nursery” teachers who are Madam Jane, the lower school lead (below, far right) and her team of Margaret, Agnes and Loice,(pictured off-duty below).
What is clear is that the 320 pupils are learning well and doing well. As we looked around, all the classes were fully engaged, teachers were working enthusiastically with their pupils.
There is a real buzz about the school and at lunch break it was heart-warming to be greeted by so many joyful children happily playing or coming to meet us to say JAMBO (hello!).
We were at school at 6:45am one morning watching the children arrive, most having walked some distance. Many of them brought sticks for the fire which is needed in the cookhouse to provide a hot breakfast and lunch. Again, the children were happy and enthusiastic about starting a new day.
Your support IS making a difference to individual children, to their families and the community and everyone at school asks us to pass on their appreciation.
Hand washing and sanitation
The concerns raised during the February 2018 trip regarding the drinking tap and the wet ground area has been addressed.
The single tap has been replaced with a tap station with waste water fully drained away. The improvement has also seen the waste water from the kitchen area drained away too.
Further, a ‘bridge’ has been built between the classroom walkway and the kitchen improving safety and hygiene for both children and staff. This is all a big improvement and has fully removed the wet area, thus reducing the breeding ground for mosquitos and other diseases whilst deterring animal visits.
(A possible project to add a covered area with tables behind the new ‘bridge’ is being considered.)
Nursery play area
Since our last visit in February, a new play area has been established and is now fully completed and well used. It is supervised by teachers and we saw the younger children having a great time; having some fun at school is a good thing!
Thanks to some additional generous funding the main school land has been transformed into a flat playing field. Previously the area was very rocky and undulating on many levels. (The whole school area is built on the site of an abandoned stone quarry.)
Whilst the main area has been completed and a large flat area fit for play is soon to be available once the grass grows, there are still some parts to be completed. Due to the rocky nature of the ground the work was considerably more difficult to complete than expected and available funds have been used up. The local community are exploring ways to have all the work completed.
This is another significant development for the both the school and the wider Timboni community.