February 15, 2024

New Year, Starting Secondary

The start of an exciting journey at St Jude’s for 144 new students.

Coming in Hot: New Form 1 students sporting their new uniforms.

At the beginning of every year, St Jude’s campuses are filled with fresh, new faces of students joining the school for the first time. This includes Standard 1 and 2 students in primary, who are at the start of their academic journey and Form 1 students joining St Jude’s at the secondary school level. This is a proud moment for everyone at the school as it represents the culmination of an extensive scholarship application process.

There are three key stages of school in Tanzania; seven years of primary school from Standard 1 to 7, then four years of secondary school from Form 1 to 4 in Ordinary Level (O Level) studies, and finally the final two years of secondary school, Form 5 and 6 in Advanced Level (A Level) studies.

“My parents received a letter inviting me to apply for a scholarship at St Jude’s,” recalls Newton, one of the new Form 1 students at St Jude’s Secondary School.

“I was one of five students from my school who received the invitation, so I was determined to give it my best shot,” he adds.

Over the next few weeks, Newton and hundreds of other applicants underwent a series of examinations and poverty assessments. Eventually, 144 applicants were selected to join St Jude’s.

Making New Friends: New students socialising at St Jude’s.

“Our scholarship application process is very rigorous and competitive,” says Ms Herieth, a St Jude’s alum of 10 years currently working full-time as a teacher.

Speaking at the Inside St Jude’s Podcast, Herieth explains, “Every year we send out invitation letters to thousands of high-performing students in government schools across three regions of northern Tanzania.”

“We take great care to ensure that every applicant has a fair chance of getting a scholarship at St Jude’s. So, it is a proud moment for everyone when the new students finally report to school,” she adds.

St Jude’s has a comprehensive orientation program to ensure a smooth transition for new students at the school. It involves a school tour, personalised English lessons, and a strong buddy system.

These 144 new students join our existing students coming up from the primary school.

“Every new student at school is paired with an older brother or sister to give them an inclusive experience of our community,” says Ms Agnesi, Form 1 Level Coordinator at St Jude’s Secondary School.

“We also have homeroom teachers, boarding parents, and level coordinators to help them settle in and adapt in the best way possible,” she adds.

During the orientation period, new students would visit the school library, and computer labs, and try out different sports in the field. This is usually an eye-opening experience and a great way to develop new hobbies.

“I really love the art and computer rooms,” says Newton, who is quickly adapting to life at St Jude’s. One of his best experiences is learning English with St Jude’s English as a Second Language (ESL) program. He has also discovered his love for basketball and volleyball over in the sports fields.

“I have only ever played football,” says Newton. “But trying out different sports has made me realise that I’m also good at throwing the ball – not just kicking it,” he adds with a smile.

Newton is one of 235 students currently starting their secondary school education at St Jude’s. This is in addition to 45 new students joining St Jude’s in Standard 1 and 2 at primary school.

Your support enables St Jude’s to provide scholarships to hundreds of qualified students each year. Sponsor Today.


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