Education

School Attendance

Given the importance of education, MCV’s objective is to maximize school attendance.

While no fees are required for primary school, there are few such schools, and most children have to walk long distances to attend. In addition, there are the costs of school supplies and clothes to contend with. MCV encourages caregivers to send their children to school, both orphans and non-orphans alike, and offers help with clothes and supplies. The good news is that, while government surveys indicate that 67% of all primary school age children in the Mangochi District attend primary school, 76% of MCV’s primary school age orphans (ages 6-12) attended primary school in 2007.

In addition to adequate completion of primary school, fees are required for attendance at secondary school. These fees are beyond the means of most households, and would generally preclude attendance by orphans. Thus, MCV uses donations to support orphans who have done well in primary school. Because of this support, 85% of MCV’s secondary school age orphans (ages 13-18) attended secondary school in 2007, compared to just 31% of all secondary school age children in the Mangochi District.

School Performance

To enhance the availability of high-quality secondary education, MCV established Gracious Secondary Scholl on its central campus. The school started in 2007 and included Forms I and II. Form III was added in 2008 and Form IV was added in January 2009. There are now more than 300 students at Gracious, including 100 orphans who are supported by donations to MCV.

In Malawi, students who have completed Form II take the Junior Certificate Exam, and students completing secondary school take the Malawi Secondary Certificate of Education (MSCE) Exam. Students from MCV’s Gracious secondary school have consistently excelled on these national exams, far surpassing the national passing rates. MCV’s sponsored orphans are often among the top performers. For example, in 2014 Gracious had a 93% pass rate compared to a national passing rate of 55%. Read about specific stories of success and exam results on the MCV Blog here.

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