September 18, 2019
Dear Friends and supporters,
We hope this newsletter finds you in good health and good spirits.
We have some exciting news to share with all of you. But as is sometimes the case, excitement can come riding in a carriage called Change, pulled by two horses named Rules and Regulation.
Here are our challenges and solutions in a nutshell that we are choosing to view in a positive and dynamic light. The Ethiopian Education Ministry has seen fit to put restrictions on schools like ours based on the fact that our class sizes are small combined with the fact that the zoning for our facility is residential and not intended to house a school. The solution we have chosen to embrace is to turn our current model of providing a solid educational start for primary through 4th grade students, into one where we focus on giving Kindergarten aged children and even younger preschoolers the very best head start possible.
In other words, starting this school season, we cannot continue to legally provide older students with classrooms and teachers beyond kindergarten in our current facility. But we are free to focus our attention and services on preschoolers. We can even more intensely concentrate on giving the youngest members of our neighborhood in Addis Ababa a high quality, colorful, safe, playful, linguistically rich and experientially diverse beginning. We want to fill our classrooms with puzzles and posters, blocks and books, games and gadgets, dress-up clothes, puppets, play houses, and more. We want to fill the minds of our students with stories and science, curiosity and possibility, confidence and self-love, but above all safety, health, and hope. And of course, we want to ready our young ones with skills that will enable them to be successful lifelong learners by exposing them to print and school-appropriate norms of behavior.
We hope you’ll be as excited as we are to drill down and specialize in the educational foundation work that we’ve just described. In addition, our efforts continue in the town of Bishoftu to build a preschool wing of the school in that location, and of course to obtain from the Addis Ababa city planners and leaders a site upon which to build a full-fledged school for elementary students of all ages.
And as always, we will continue to support those children who have come through our doors even if they have moved on to attend other schools. They can always come back to us for tutoring, exercise books, uniforms, or a meal. We hope that you, our supporters, will continue to join with us as we navigate the latest currents and changing waters of city rules and regulations. We want our students to know that we remain rock-solid in our commitment to support them in whatever way we can.
Thank you very much
The Fregenet Foundation