In 2019-20, our Agadez Learning Center welcomed 34 middle school students and our Mentoring program worked with 133 women across 21 communities to support 665 youth. On average, school enrollment increased 18% but some newer partners have seen even more growth. At the Aouderas Middle School enrollment increased by 37% this year - including a remarkable 62% increase among girls. The programs meet critical needs for rural and nomadic students who rarely complete elementary school, much less continue beyond that.
This year, 335 middle school students benefited from after-school programming. The system of supplementary course hours protects students from strikes and helps ensure they will complete 100% of their annual curriculum, without disturbance. In addition to ensuring curriculum completion, the extra course hours provide teachers with enough time to work with students directly on revision – reviewing tricky subjects, answering questions, and more thoroughly engaging students in material.The support is working and in the Aouderas Middle School they’ve achieved almost three times the pass rate of the regional capital.
Another critical component to our support is that many rural students need to travel to middle school but have nowhere secure to stay. Reporting suggests 2/3 of students accepted to middle school aren’t enrolling because of this issue. In addition to our 34 Agadez Learning Center students, we provide homestay support for 47 high risk students through our mentoring program. We believe this program will help diversify the students who have the opportunity to pursue middle school by ensuring inclusion of underrepresented populations including ethnic minority groups, girls, and students with physical disabilities.
We seek to provide students with everything they need to succeed. Finally though, when we ask students to name the most important things they've received, we always get the same two answers: running water and electricity to study at night! It's easy to underestimate the power of "the basics" - we get so accustomed to them that we forget - but the basics are what lay a strong foundation for everything else that is to come!
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