From choosing the site on 21 June (see post: https://bulungulaincubator.org/2017/06/21/choosing-the-site-for-the-bulungula-college/) to Opening Day on 5 October. Once again the Imana Foods and The Wild Ride Education Company (WREC) had our head spinning with how quickly they got things done! Elangeni Builders, who were contractors for the Folokwe Preschool that Imana and WREC built for us last year, were on site again (see: https://bulungulaincubator.org/2016/08/02/opening-our-imana-wild-ride-preschool/).
The Bulungula College is the most ambitious project of the Bulungula Incubator yet. Using data from the surrounding schools in 2015, we found that approximately 95% of the learners from Xhora Mouth Administrative Area do not ever complete Grade 12. There is no functioning scholar transport from the area to any High School or College. Learners who would like to continue beyond Grade 9 have to rent accommodation away from their families and care for themselves, while still young and vulnerable teenagers. Furthermore, the nearest institution that offers Grades 10-12 has consistently had a matric pass rate below 40%.
Now that Phase 1 of the buildings are complete we will begin an intensive ‘Preparation Year’ for the learners of Xhora Mouth J.S.S, our feeder school, through to the end of 2018. In 2019 the inaugural Grade 10 class will begin. We will add Grade 11 in 2020 and Grade 12 in 2021.
Despite the pouring rain, the Opening Ceremony was conducted in high spirits and attended by many dignitaries, including Chief Zwelikhanyile, Chief No-ofisi, Chief Nosinto, a Representative from the Office of the Mayor and, of course, our generous donors: Imana Foods and WREC.