Joseph is 61 years old and is the headteacher and Class Three teacher. Joseph enjoys working at FOCUSSA as he likes interacting with small children, particularly as he lives with children of the same age.
Joseph previously told COCO that slow food production was an issue at FOCUSSA. The school now has a food forest which has greatly improved this problem and gives children a varied, healthy diet.
“The school will be self-sustaining as it won’t be necessary to buy food from the market, it will be available from our own activities.”
“The children are very secure in the new classrooms. Before it could rain and lessons were interrupted as the roofs leaked and the walls were delicate. The classrooms are also very spacious, which means that students have enough air and light to work comfortably. On the walls we teachers can now hang charts, paint learning materials and the blackboards are very big. Important information can stay on the blackboard for 1 week without us needing to wipe it off, which means that students have the opportunity to memorise.”
“The solar power is very useful and exciting. It would be great to have a television and projector so that students can see events from around the country, such as the news, sports and festivals.”
Composting toilets have also been installed, with the waste being used as manure for cultivating crops. He says that:
“The toilets now feel very safe, there is no danger of a student falling into the latrine which was previously a worry. Students now much prefer using the toilet. People in the community have seen these toilets and wish to build them around their homes as they will last forever and ever.”
Joseph is delighted with the progress at the school to date. However, there are still several things needed to ensure that FOCUSSA Primary can be as successful as possible. Firstly, more classrooms are needed so that students can continue all the way through primary education; currently the school can only function up to standard four. Furthermore, the school also needs books and teaching materials, whilst teachers need to be paid a more reasonable salary to reduce staff turnover.