The Rukonga Vision School in Kavango East was established to improve the quality of education delivery in the country. The school serves as a model whose performance and culture should be emulated by other public and private schools.
Rukonga Vision School has also extended an opportunity to the less privileged and vulnerable learners to study there. To achieve this, the government has invested heavily in infrastructure, including state-of-the-art laboratory equipment and high-quality hostel facilities, which are fitted with residential quarters for supervisory teachers.
The school also has sports facilities, which include tennis, basketball, volleyball courts and a football pitch. Part of its infrastructure is a kitchen, dining hall and modern multi-purpose hall, which is used for social events, assemblies, external examinations. The school is equipped with quality textbooks, computers, high technology smart boards and a clever touch board.
According to the headmaster, Moses Gorengecho, the magnificent infrastructure that exists in the school acts as motivation for teachers. “For instance, they would use the ICT facilities in their teaching in different circumstances. Each teacher at the vision school is given a laptop to use for their teaching and learning activities, for projecting all work on the smart boards and for planning,” he said.
“In order to make optimum use of the facilities, and provide quality tuition, RVS requires staff of high quality who are highly self-motivated. At full operation, the school enrolment will be 600 learners – but so far, we have just above 500 learners.”
The school provides hostel facilities to all its learners. There are no day scholars; provision is made for a full set of school uniforms and toiletries. “Our field of study is mainly science and technology, supported by the entrepreneurship subject as a business support subject, with Portuguese as a foreign language. So far, the performance of the school has been excellent throughout the terms – and at national level in Grade 10 and 12 and now Grade 11 and 12,” he noted.
A huge premium is also placed on discipline, with all teachers and staff handed a code of conduct. According to the headmaster, teamwork and discipline of teachers and learners are what keeps the school’s performance among the top in the country.
“Staff and learners receive a code of conduct of the school once they enrol or are employed at Rukonga Vision School. Teachers’ discipline manifests itself in many ways, including adherence to stipulated submissions of schemes, lesson plans and bi-cycle tests,” he said.
“Teachers also stick to time on attendance, registration and different duties assigned to them. Learners also follow the set-out guidelines are enforced by the discipline structures in the school, ranging from classroom to hostel, with LRCs, class, library and hostel sports captains playing a major role.”
Now and again, teachers and learners receive external support from stakeholders; for example, the school governing board, head office and the regional office always visit and support the school.
The headmaster added the understanding of what Rukonga Vision School stands for motivates teachers and learners to keep the momentum of high-level performance in the school. The school also offers a vast range of extra-mural activities, allowing learners to develop particular skills and also to exhibit their non-academic abilities. Extra-mural activities serve to motivate learners, refresh their minds and set them to be physically and mentally ready for learning.
“We offer various extra-mural activities from athletics along with other sports activities, school choir, debates as well as language clubs, amongst others. All activities are done on specific days, specific seasons or across all the trimesters of the school as programmed,” said Gorengecho. Learners enrolled at Rukonga Vision School are from across the 14 regions, comprising orphans and vulnerable children as well as those from previously disadvantaged communities.
“The learner recruitment policy of the school addresses the issues of equity and quality in education across the whole country,” he said. Also, learners should perform above average and achieve 75% or above in mathematics, natural science and health education with a total average of 65% or above in all subjects in Grade 7.
In regards to the admission process, the ministry of education head office sends the quota, allocated to each region, depending on the percentage of learners in Grade 7 that year in that region.
For example, the number of learners for Grade 8 per region is determined proportionally based on the total of Grade 7 enrolment for that year in each of the 14 regions. The region then divides the quota into the circuits and the circuit office through inspectors inform schools and select the learners based on the criteria above set by the head office.
The regional office through regional school counsellors conduct school visits and interview learners and recommend learners to head office for possible admission. The recommended names and application forms are then forwarded to head office for further handling and scrutinising by the National Preparatory Committee.
“The National Preparatory Committee or head office sends the final list for each aregion to Rukonga Vision school for admission,” he noted. The school currently has a staff complement of 25 teachers, 17 school support staff, 15 hostel support staff and 522 learners.