Despite the government’s focus on primary education as an important nation building tool after the 1994 genocide, the quality of the primary school system in Rwanda is far from perfect. The IMF noted in its 2003 country annual report that primary education suffered from a shortage of qualified teachers, a heavy curriculum, and a lack of appropriate educational material.
It is here that private education — especially at the fledgling nursery and primary levels which serve as a critical foundation for a child’s future — has an important role to play. Passionate educationists like Edward Munyaburanga, whose Highland School is being recognised as a premier educational institution in the Bugesera District, have a key part to perform in lifting hundreds of children into a world of education and thus empowerment.
Edward has been running his private education business for the last six years, starting his association with the education sector as a school principal for pre-school and nursery education. Prior to establishing his own business, he played an important role in school administration, mobilising Parent and Teachers Associations to ensure that schools are aligned to public education policy to sustain quality education while he was serving as Director of Economic Development in Bugesera District.
When it comes to quality education, Highland School’s record speaks for itself. For two consecutive years, 2013 and 2014, all students in the final year have shown outstanding performance, securing first division with eligibility to gain admission to the Government Secondary School of Excellence, causing Highland School to be rated number one in the entire Eastern Province, and guaranteeing a bright future for its young scholars.
Basis the loan availed from GroFin, 18 more rooms will be constructed, with 13 being used for classroom facilities and the remaining five to be utilised as a filing area, library, board room, kitchen and admin office respectively. A boon to the students who would otherwise have suffered from crowded classrooms and poor student teacher ratios, the school is targeting 35 students per room with a capacity to accommodate 45 students, and is aiming to employ 48 teachers and support staff, almost double the current level of 26 teachers and support staff.
Apart from finance, Highland School is also benefiting from the business support that GroFin offers to its entrepreneurs, propelling them to greater heights and ensuring business sustainability over the long term.
“Highland School did not have a proper accounting system. Our emphasis in the pre-business support stage has been to urge the client to have an accounting system that facilitates efficient financial management and reporting,” says Teddy Ndayambaje, Investment Manager, GroFin Rwanda.