​Another day of farm friends! Yara and Anna came back for round two, and Sal joined as well. I thought yesterday that we couldn’t possibly have any more fields to sow, but they managed to find one. Well, I thought today we DEFINITELY wouldn’t be doing it again… I was wrong. This time, we went over a bean field that I didn’t even know was part of our farm. I asked about the bean plants, and they said that they bought the wrong bean seeds and these weren’t good to eat. I think they just like growing corn the best, so now there are going to be like seven corn fields. Also, in case you’re wondering, since the sowing/machete/pinky finger incident of a few weeks ago, I’ve been extra careful with my machete and have had no further issues. Hooray for that!

The corn in the very first field we sowed.. I think it’s been like 6 weeks now since this was planted

At school, Avy and I were planning to observe the P3 teacher, but he didn’t show up. He’s been sick for the last few weeks, and Avy has been getting more and more annoyed that he hasn’t been doing his job. She went home because she said that she was losing even more faith in the school system because a teacher who has been completely blowing off his responsibilities hasn’t been replaced. She didn’t want to teach P3 because that would almost be encouraging his behavior, but then she didn’t want to stay at school in another classroom while knowing that P3 had no teacher. I stuck around and stayed in Everlasting’s class again and helped grade exercises while he taught.

The ex-bean field

I stepped out of the class for a minute before the first break, and there was a new guy teaching P3! I was super confused. Everlasting said that they had requested a new teacher to take over, but I didn’t think he would be there already!
Around 9AM while I was grading, a paper came around with a sign up for a teacher meeting starting at 9:45 (the beginning of first break). Apparently I was invited, and I figured why not? I was interested to see how it went. At 9:55, Everlasting said, “we should probably go to the meeting”. Oh right. At 10:05, five minutes were spent deciding who was going to do the opening prayer. At 10:10, the meeting minutes from the last teacher meeting in July were read. We all looked at each other for about 10 minutes while the headmaster asked if anyone wanted to add or change anything before accepting them. Only about two of the current teachers had been at the meeting, and they both said they didn’t remember it. Five more minutes. Okay, accepted.

During introductions, one of the teachers asked who the new guy was (the one I saw teaching P3), and the headmaster gave an explanation that didn’t really clear anything up for me. What I got from it was that they needed a new P3 teacher, and this guy just walked into the classroom and started teaching and the headmaster was happy that the problem was solved. Huh? I’m sure I missed something, but I’m glad that they have a teacher now. Hopefully he’s actually a teacher and not just some random person off the street.

Next they talked about forming a committee to collect the printing fees from students for the exams. That discussion probably took another 20 minutes, and three people who didn’t want the job got nominated and assigned to the committee.

The next topic was actually more interesting. For the exams, the teachers often end up reading the questions to the kids because they can’t read them themselves. The headmaster was saying that he wanted to mix up the students in each classroom to make it harder to cheat, and one of the teachers brought up the reading issue. That launched into a whole discussion about how reading is a big problem at the school, and the final decision was that the non-readers in school will be identified and have to attend additional phonics classes after school. I was excited because I think it’s going to be good for the kids, and it was encouraging to feel like the teachers really care about the students.

I left the meeting at noon to go to lunch, and they still weren’t finished. Oh yeah, and during this whole meeting, the kids were all just running wild and not in class. Teacher meetings apparently always happen during school… because that makes total sense. I don’t know. TIA. I’m choosing to focus on the fact that some really good things happened during the meeting and ignore the fact that no one was teaching during that time. I’m interested to see what happens over the next few weeks with all of this momentum!

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