Update from Lesotho
Coach Roy: We have been enjoying the last month for both Academy and All schools programme though we had a bumpy start first two weeks because of National teachers’ strike. For the Academy programme, we had to switch to non-Government schools in Maseru. We got a great turnout in all five schools. Tshepo Primary has the highest turnout with 132 participants, we had said we need 50 girls and 50 boys but the principal said everyone wants to play. We had to adopt the games at Tholoana Bophelo and Tiny Tots because they don’t have much space.
The Atlas All Schools Programme has been challenging because LESEA and Pomolong are government schools so students are on holiday because of the strike. We have still managed to scrape up an average of 40 participants per session but we have had reports that schools are reopening to end the strike so we are expecting normal attendance to resume. We have been teaching the Academy life skills content in the Atlas programme because we have realized that they cannot do without those life skills.
Going forward, we will be focusing on introducing the guidance counselling session in the Atlas All Schools programme. We are also hoping to have the junior teams up and running the under 15s group, so far we have been working with the senior group which are the under 17s in the Atlas programme.
Litsitso Motseremeli: Well, from my office I have learned that we really have good coaches who loves their job very much. When we learned of the strikes at government schools, the coaches approached me with a great suggestion that, instead of just waiting for the teachers strike to be over, we can work with private schools until the strike is over. I realized that, our coaches are not here for money, but they really love what they are doing, passing the knowledge they have acquired from Coach Roy. I think with the caliber of coaches we have, the Academy will thrive and achieve our goals.
For LESIA and Phomolong, we have decided that if teachers go to strike again, our kids will always be attending our programme. The Principals of these two schools have agreed to allow rugby kids to come to the sessions even if they are on strike.
Coach Makopano (left): Teachers at Maseru prep English medium school where impressed by the syllabus. They said it was well organized and touched on relevant issues and made the learning process more fun than in the classroom in other words the message gets through to the students easier.
Coach Tshepiso (right): The students at Tiny Tots primary school told me that they were surprised that rugby is easy to play and its enjoyable previously they thought it a complicated brutal game.