Juliet Gladys Osafo is our Ghanaian director. She was head of the school Basil Johnston (Madam Eric) volunteered at in 2000 when they hatched their plan to build and run a school in rural Ghana. Juliet has always worked for nothing.
Juliet Johnston School was established in September 2003 by Help Tafo Trust – a Scottish charity based in Banchory near Aberdeen.
Madam Eric and I teamed up to set up the ‘cane free’ school in New Tafo which is in the eastern part of Ghana for the poor and needy but bright children in the area.
What makes the school unique:
• Sponsorship of children
• Non-caning system
• Adapting UK teaching methods for Ghana
• Phonic learning
• Setting children for maths (into ability groups)
• Catch programme (for children who are behind)
• Partnership scheme with UK schools
We have 26 teaching staff, including a French teacher and one for ICT, and 6 non-teaching staff. Over the course of its 12 year history, the school has offered education to over 1,600 children. Children who have to leave the school due to transfers of their parents or death of their parents do so in tears. Most of the children who have left have been promoted to at least one class, if not two or three, above their Juliet Johnston class.
Juliet Johnston school is partnered to Crieff Muthill Primary school in Scotland. We have enjoyed this partnership for the last 10 years and each year 2 teachers from our school visit Muthill Primary and the vice versa, bringing ideas to enhance teaching and learning. Madam Eric pays quarterly visits to Ghana to offer teacher training to our teachers, thus making our teachers abreast with new methods of teaching. Her presence also boosts the morale of both staff and pupils. Some benefits derived from our partnership with Muthill Primary are knowing each other’s cultures, global awareness, singing and dancing and we are proud to make video clips of songs with Muthill Primary.
More than 80 children enjoy sponsorship from our kind and generous supporters and what is more, some have been helped further by Help Tafo Trust to go to Senior High school. Our teachers are loving, kind, affable, approachable, hardworking, dedicated and what have you – no wonder then that our motto ‘Kindness, Honesty and Hardwork – Together We Succeed’ works. Our school is counted among the best schools in the eastern region of Ghana, and as such many of our students are now at University, Polytechnics, Teacher and Nursing training colleges.
I am proud of Juliet Johnston school and I have never regretted being a part of it.