School days, school days...
Last year was a great year in the U.S. - - compared to 2020 in Uganda.
The 2019-20 school year here finished with a whimper... no proms, no graduation ceremonies... online learning instead of in-school classes, drive-by celebrations instead of parties. In Uganda? The 2020 school year, which began in February, came to a dead stop after 6 weeks. Students and school staff were sent home. Only the Primary 7, Secondary 4 and Secondary 6 students returned in 2020 – in October – so they could prepare for their national exams March 30-31, 2021. School is just now resuming for most of the students, and on a staggered schedule.
Background: The Uganda national government sets the school year calendar, which normally runs February to November. It is usually 2 terms of 13 weeks, each followed by a 3-week break, then a 3rd term followed by the long break (November – February). 2020 will have been a "dead year" for most of the students. Only those in the afore-mentioned grades will have completed their 2020 school year – and in March 2021, instead of November, 2020.
This year, the National Education Minister has announced that schools will be reopening, with different primary levels beginning and ending on staggered dates. Fr. Julius shares the details in his front-page column in the March 2021 BHIK-U newsletter.
Let's pray for all the students, school administrators & staff, and parents, who will be dealing with the logistical challenges of more Covid-caused craziness in 2021!