Newsletter - AVENIR PLUS
Mbour Senegal
November 2013

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After a huge downpour

This year, ten days after our first day back to school, Tabaski (Aid Al Adha), an important religious holiday, took place. As a result, it was as if we had two back to school days, one before and one after the holiday. On the first day of school, October 7th, we were hit with a tropical storm that we could have dealt without, but from the youngest to the eldest, all 380 students were present and ready for classes...

We have finally been able to have a roof built for the classroom that still did not have one. The owner of the kindergarten and elementary building has finally agreed to do some repairs, though we had to provide the money up front. The money is deducted monthly from the rent due until December. The first floor is finally tiled, which means that all the kindergarten classes are in much better condition. The owner of the building which houses our secondary school, whom we have also asked for assistance, is not inclined to help the school..We continue to search for a different building but everything is VERY expensive in Mbour, and we need to stay in the same neighborhood.

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Mouhamed Fadel receiving his award

Late in September, we received the results from the CFEE (end of primary school exam) and the exams to get into middle school with respectively 90% and 100% success rate. Two of our students from CM2 (6th grade): Abdou Fadel and Sokhna Aicha (a sponsored student) were rewarded by the school district for their outstanding results.
Obviously, we would like to have the same results for the Bfem (National Exam) and the Baccalaureat, but due to financial constraints, we still have to accept students who are below the ideal standard.
On the bright side, we have some incredible stories to share regarding some of our students:
In Middle School:
- Mariama (sponsored), first of her class in 6ème (7th grade) with an average of 18/20, skipped 5ème (8th grade) to have a brilliant year in 4ème (9th grade) and finish the year 2nd of her class with an average of 16.6/20.
(Please note that grades above a 14 are considered good and 16 and anything above is very good. 18 is outstanding and 20/20 is exceptional -and very rare -).
- Two students who were in 6ème (7th grade) last year, Astou (sponsored) and Mame Diarra, encouraged by Mariama's experience skipped 5ème (8th grade) and are now in 4ème (9th grade).
In Primary School:
- Abdou Aziz (sponsored) and Bathie (sponsored) were able to complete CI and CP (1st and 2nd grades) in one year.
- Thanks to our friends who worked with them over the Summer, Aliou and Abdou (both sponsored) have gone directly from CP (2nd grade) to CE2 (4th grade).
- Babacar also went from CP to CE2 because of his excellent work. This is impressive, since he started school very late. We will keep an eye on these students.

We have encouraged our primary teachers to take their professional exams in order to advance in their careers: three have taken the written and oral parts, two others have taken the written exam and will take the oral exam this year, two have also taken their baccalaureat and all passed. We applaud their efforts and encourage them to continue improving themselves.

This year, in Primary School, we have opened two 1st grades, two 2nd grades, two 3rd grades, and only one class of 4th, 5th and 6th gradefor lack of classroom space.
To this day, one hundred and eleven students are sponsored. Some are still hoping to find a sponsor - Click here to help them -.
Thank you to the students of Notre Dame de St Avé middle school, who once more walked to raise funds to sponsor students. Thanks also to the students of Fox Lane High School in New York: the social studies students who sponsored one student, the French Club, who continued to sponsor two students. Thanks to Raphaelle and Xavier's cathechism group, who started sponsoring a student this year, to the school Grundschule of Gohl, Germany, who sponsors a student, and to the Rêve Association of the Montessori Kids of Paris School, who sponsor two students.

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Town hall visit

Jacqueline, Dominique, Yves, and Jean-Pierre continue to work loyally here at the school. An immense thank you to the four of them. Jean-Pierre took a group of CE2 students to visit the Mbour town hall and regularly shows films in the afternoon that are used as the basis for all oral activities.
Through all of November, two French student teachers from France are with us to complete the final stages of their student teaching. They are sharing the knowledge attained through their recent education with all of our teachers of CE1.

We now have 504 registered students. All the pictures of our sponsored children are online. Once again, I am going to ask for your continued support and help. Many of you have visited the school. You know what we do and why we do it. Please share your experiences and knowledge of the school's mission with your friends and family. Send anyone who may be interested in supporting our school to Thank you and see you soon.

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The kindergarten/primary school team