KAMPALA – The UK government and Promoting Equality in African Schools (PEAS) have commissioned a three storeyed building at PEAS Onwards and Upwards secondary school in Buloba. This is the first ever-storeyed building in PEAS’ networks in Uganda and Zambia. The ground was broken for the structure by UK Minister Vicky Ford, during a visit to Uganda in January.
The structure provides one science laboratory, office space and six classrooms creating additional learning spaces. The science laboratory will strengthen delivery of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects in the PEAS Network, challenging the belief that disadvantaged learners cannot excel in STEM subjects. The dormitory spaces will address barriers that girls and boys in less advantaged communities face to access secondary education and transition into post-secondary education.
In the last 7 years, the UK has provided funding to support PEAS in expanding access to affordable quality secondary education. PEAS’ network now consists of 30 secondary schools in Uganda, educating over 14,000 students in 24 districts. In addition, PEAS provides direct support to 200 Government-run schools, helping them to improve the quality of their education and so strengthening the education system more broadly.
Speaking about this, Deputy Development Director of the British High Commission Kampala, Matthew Little said: “The UK is committed to supporting more children in Uganda to receive a quality education. For individuals, it is a pathway to more options and freedom in later life; for Uganda, it is a pathway to increased growth and prosperity. These benefits should be available for everyone, and we are proud that our partnership with PEAS is giving opportunities to thousands of children who might otherwise be left out.”
PEAS is a not-for-profit organisation, running schools in less advantaged communities with few or no affordable schools providing quality secondary education. With many secondary schools in Uganda significantly increasing fees post COVID-19 and some failing to re-open, PEAS have protected access to secondary education for learners that would have otherwise dropped out of school as a result of the increased fees; numbers of learners at PEAS schools are now higher than before COVID-19.
Henry Senkasi, Country Director of PEAS added “This partnership has created 1,020 new learning spaces, 2 science laboratories and 660 boarding spaces in eight 8 PEAS schools across the PEAS Network in Uganda. We couldn’t be more thankful to the UK for this commitment and long standing partnership and the investment they are making to Ugandan students’ lives and indirectly to their future, ensuring they reach their full potential to become productive future citizens.”
The schools supported by the UK include during this round of infrastructure support; PEAS Kuc Kigen in Lamwo; PEAS Toroma in Katakwi; PEAS Mukongoro and PEAS Nyero in Kumi; Onwards & Upwards in Wakiso, PEAS Kityerera in Mayuge; PEAS Kichwamba and PEAS Kazingo in Kabarole.
The launch brings together district education partners, local government, community representation/ parents and PEAS student representation.