Thursday, April 25
Mr. Kenneth Kamwani, headmaster of Nkhoma Primary School, must solve a critical math problem every day: 2,500 students from kindergarten through seventh grade, taught by 35 teachers in only 15 classrooms. This means over 70 students per classroom, each the size of an average bedroom, and numerous classes sitting under trees or in corridors because there is simply no space within the archaic building. To help with crowding, younger students are on split schedules, quietly seated in rows on the floors due to lack of the most basic classroom supplies. The oldest students, preparing for an exam that will determine whether they are able to proceed to secondary school, start at 6:00 a.m., break for lunch, and then work until late afternoon. For the last few months before exams, seventh-grade students become boarders, sleeping in the empty classrooms, bathing in open air, and doing their own cooking so that they can get instruction at night and on weekends. Many lack adequate food. Most live too far away to walk home at night, when wild animals can prove dangerous. The school struggles to provide paper and pens, and there are no textbooks available—students hand copy their own! Notwithstanding these challenges, of the 203 Nkhoma Primary students taking the primary school leaving exam last year, 192 passed, an enormous feat. Teachers received no extra pay or privileges for extra prep sessions on top of 140 students per day—they just wanted the students to succeed.
Let us join in prayer for:
PC(USA) People in Mission
Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP), Zomba Theologial College: Rachel Stone, team ministry, Timothy Stone, professor/lecturer in Old Testament • CCAP Blantyre Synod: Rev. Mary(Kay) Day , training chaplain/Chigodi administrator • CCAP Livingstonia Synod: Rev. Deborah Chase, dean of academic affairs and lecturer, University of Livingstonia, College of Theology, James McGill, water and sanitation development specialist, Jodi McGill, clinical instructor of nursing, Dr. Martha Sommers, medical officer, Embangweni Hospital • CCAP Nkhoma Synod: Dr. Barbara Nagy, physician, Nkhoma Hospital
Let us pray
Faithful God, we thank and praise you for your wondrous works. We are grateful for the students’ leaving-exam results and for the dedicated headmaster and faithful teachers who helped make this possible. We ask for continued blessing on them. In the name of Jesus, the Great Teacher. Amen.