Jane Adeny Memorial School - Northern Illinois University

The Jane Adeny Memorial School
for Girls, Kenya
© Diana L. Swanson, Teresa Wasonga, and Andrew
Otieno, 2012
This presentation is dedicated
to the future of Kenya
and with joy in the
Nobel Laureates of 2012
Leymah Gbowee
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Tawakkul Karman
and in Memory of
2004 Nobel Peace Laureate,
the late Prof. Wangari Maathai
The Mission & Goals of JAMS
 Create “a school good enough for the richest, open to the poorest”
(Horace Mann)
Be an innovative pedagogical model for the nation
Empower students to ask questions
Show that corporal punishment is unnecessary
Create an active, collaborative learning environment
Show that enriching the learning environment gets good results
(library, extracurricular activities)
Empower girls to become women who participate fully in the life
of the nation
The Founding Class of 2014
The Class of 2015
JAMS Enrollment in 2012
1 (9th grade): 33
• Form 2 (10th grade): 22
• Increased from 12 to 55 in one year!
• Form
Some of the students’ experiences
• Lost her father to AIDS and now her mother is dying
• Orphaned at age 5, lived with her poverty-stricken grandmother, roamed
the countryside to find sugar cane to sell in order to buy food
• Her widowed father went insane and now wanders the streets of the local
• Pushed her wheel-chair-bound father 6K to ask for help to go to school
• Beaten by her father when she protested his beating of her mother
• Lives on one meal a day at home
Poverty in Kenya
• Total
population: 41.1 million people
• 46% of total population lives below the national
poverty line
• 20% live on less than $1 a day
• Men’s employment rate: 61.2%
• Women’s employment rate: 49.1%
Education in Kenya
• 98% of children start primary school
• 45% finish primary school
• About 23% enter secondary technical
• 24% enter secondary school
• 18.7% finish secondary school
• 3% enter university
The “hidden curriculum”
• Kenyan curriculum largely unaffected by women’s studies and
gender-neutral curriculum development.
• Girls in schools subjected to significantly higher levels of
harassment, including sexual harassment, from students and from
teachers, than boys.
• “Teachers’ attitudes and behavior reveal lower expectations for
adolescent girls, traditional assumptions about gender roles, and
double standards about sexual activity.”
Mensch and Lloyd, “Gender Differences in the Schooling Experiences of Adolescents in Low-Income
Countries: The Case of Kenya,” Studies in Family Planning 29.2 (1998): 167-184.
Why educate girls?
They have the same existential value and the same right
to develop their potential as boys.
Educating girls is also necessary to
eliminating poverty, epidemics, and
inequality worldwide.
“Investing in girls is . . . central to boosting
development, breaking the cycle of intergenerational
poverty, and allowing girls, and then women—50
percent of the world’s population—to lead better,
fairer and more productive lives.”
World Bank President, Robert Zoellick
“ “Getting to Equal: How Educating Every Girl Can Help Break the Cycle of Poverty”
Return on Investment in the
developing world
Women and girls return ca. 80% of the money
invested in them to their families and communities.
Men and boys return ca. 40%.
Source: Kurt Thurmaier, Professor of Public Administration, NIU, presentation to TeachGirlsGlobal, DeKalb, IL, April,
The JAMS Campus
Nyanza Province
Nyanza is one of
the smaller
provinces of
Kenya. Nyanza is
relatively underresourced due to
the political
history of the
nation since
from Britain in
2 kms and a 500 ft climb from the
paved road to the school
Classrooms, Science Room, and Library
An English class discusses poetry
A memoir workshop in the library with a
TeachGirlsGlobal volunteer
The Dormitory
The Dormitory
The Dining Hall
The Dining Hall
Guest House
The Kenyan Secondary
School Curriculum
• Kiswahili
 Biology
• English
 Business
• Geography
 Agriculture
• History
 Christian Religious
• Mathematics
• Physics
• Chemistry
 These subjects are
mandated and regulated by
the national ministry of
Discussing a returned exam
with Mr. Samson
JAMS results so far
 The students speak up and ask questions much more
often than when they arrived
 The students express themselves in English and Kiswahili
much better than when they arrived
 2012 final, cumulative exam results:
 12 students got As
 16 students got Bs
 23 students got Cs
 3 students got Ds
Singing and dancing in the Dining Hall
Doing a jigsaw puzzle for the first time
The students play soccer every afternoon.
Farming the campus
Rainwater catchment
Solar power
Two of the students, happy and proud of
their harvest of cow peas
Chickens provide eggs for Friday’s egg stew.
The school has a sealed septic system.
Students doing laundry with rain water
Students, staff, and friends harvesting maize
Plans for growth
Growth in enrollment
new class added each year until all four
secondary school forms (grades) are filled
• total enrollment planned to be between 120 and
• additional teachers as enrollment grows
• an administrator of residence life
Construction of facilities
• Teacher
• More solar panels
• Well ( to be drilled in January-February, 2013, supported
by Rotary Clubs of Barrington and Morrison, Illinois)
• Solar water heating system
• Science building (3 laboratory classrooms)
• More water tanks for rain catchment
Three years ago, the school site looked like this.
MUCH can be accomplished in the next three years!