Yesterday marked the official opening of PEAS Kampinda Secondary School, co-funded by COINS Foundation and the first PEAS school built under a ground-breaking new partnership with the Zambian government.

PEAS Kampinda is located in a rural area in Kasama, Northern Province, identified as an area with unmet demand for quality secondary education. The majority of the local community engages in small scale agriculture, including the production of maize and other crops, with little opportunity for formal employment. Most families living near to PEAS Kampinda live in homes without running water of electricity.

On 22nd January, PEAS Kampinda opened its doors for the start of the 2018 academic year and as of 5th March, 313 students have enrolled in the school, 49% of whom are female (compared to a national average of 43%). In addition to serving students below the government academic cut-off point for admissions, PEAS Kampinda offers zero-school fees for day students, ensuring that some of the most marginalised students are still able to attend. Without PEAS Kampinda, many of these students would no longer be in education and it is a testament to PEAS’ commitment to pursuing true equality in education that all 55 of the boarding students are female.

On Thursday 22nd March, his honour Mr Brian Mundubile, Minister for the Northern Province, officially launched the school. Visitors from across the world came to celebrate the opening, including Abigail Deffee, former Director of COINS Foundation. Students expressed their thanks through dance and poetry, whilst students and supporters of the school planted trees to represent the future growth of the school.

To help to drive forwards the quality of education in the broader area, PEAS Kampinda has already been participating in local government meetings and activities where Head Teachers from four government schools recently visited to observe PEAS’ teachers. Collaborating with surrounding schools in this way will also provide useful insight into how PEAS can best support other, non-PEAS, schools.

Following the official launch, PEAS looks forward to the ongoing expansion of the PEAS Zambia network. Over the next 10 years PEAS and the Ministry will collaborate to expand the PEAS Zambia network from 3 to 30 secondary schools under the new partnership with the Zambian government. PEAS’ aim is to continue building on the momentum of opening PEAS Kampinda by building two more schools throughout 2018, with the plan for them to open in 2019.

We would like to congratulate PEAS for this successful launch and look forwards to following their progress both at PEAS Kampinda and future schools.