OUR FIRST I.S. STUDENT!
In 2006, Amani H. Amani, unable to afford the tuition to attend school, decided that he was not going to let his economic situation prevent him from getting his education. He came to the Imbaseni Free Library (our original site) every day to use the books available for him to study his secondary subjects. He sat for the National Exam as an “independent candidate”, and he passed! Invigorated by his success, he continued to study at the (new and improved) Jifundishe Free Library and – sure enough, one year later, he successfully passed his Form 4 exam. After a further two years of independent study, he successfully passed his Form 6 exam. Amani is now at St. Augustine University, studying education. On his school breaks, he can often be found teaching in Jifundishe’s I.S. classes!
THE I.S. PROGRAM TODAY…
Amani’s amazing story spread like wild fire in the villages surrounding the library, and Jifundishe is answering the call.
In Tanzania, many students who complete their primary education are unable to continue on to the secondary level. This is due to a variety of factors – financial, cultural, and logistical. Young women are often required to stay home to assist with cleaning, child care, and household subsistence farming. Young men are often forced into low paying jobs at an early age. Jifundishe recognizes and aims to address the needs, schedules and interests of these forgotten students.
The I.S. program is a comprehensive initiative offered at the Jifundishe Free Library for those students who wish to prepare for the national exams but who are unable to attend school. Students who participate in this JFL program have access to tutors, teachers, and all of the required curriculum needed to pass the national
exams. The schedule is time-effective, and the program is completely free. I.S. students within this alternative education program not only gain practical knowledge that will apply within their existing lives, but if they pass the ﬁnal national exams (the same exam that school attendees must pass), they have a chance to re-enter the educational system at a higher level. The Tanzanian students range in age and ability but they are united in their drive, intention, and excitement for learning.
Jifundishe staff and supporters have been nothing short of astonished by the rapid growth and success of this program. In 2010, 100% of the I.S. students from the JFL passed the Form 4 exam, and 75% of the IS students from the JFL passed the Form 2 exam.
There are currently 80 IS students studying at the JFL, and they are taught and assisted by the talented library staff, as well as several part-time teachers dedicated to this curriculum.