Every year at the end of January, Zimbabwean students nervously await their Ordinary and Advanced Level exam results, which are required to continue on to university level work, and are also requested by many employers and vocational training programs.
In 2012, Tariro had an unprecedented number of students write their Advanced, or “A” Level exams, with five students sitting for this important test. Late last week, I received a very exciting email from our program coordinator, Fadzie Muzhandu. All five of our students passed! With a pass rate of 100%, Tariro students are significantly exceeding the national pass rate, which stood at 82% this year, according to the Zimbabwean School Examinations Council, or ZIMSEC.
Students generally write three subjects for their A Level exams, and are graded on a scale of 5 possible points per subject, for a total of 15 possible points. According to ZIMSEC, passing the A Level exams is defined as receiving a score of at least 2 points out of 15. And of the five Tariro students who wrote the exam in 2012, Pamela K. and Natalie S. earned a total of 3 points each, putting them near the bottom of the passing range. We’re proud of their achievement, as even making it to A Levels represents a goal that many of our students never thought they would achieve.
But the news is even better than that! Scoring near the top of the range, our other three students came out of the exam with flying colors! Melody M., pictured above, earned 13 points on her exam! Joining her, Politeness N. likewise scored 13 points. And with a total of 11 points, Tariro K. wasn’t far behind.
For Melody, Politeness, and Tariro, attending university is now a very real option, and Fadzie is working actively with them, as she does with all of our O and A Level graduates, to help them find placement in tertiary level study.
Tariro’s dedication to seeing our students through university is one of the things that sets us apart from other organizations. Unlike programs that focus on elementary and secondary education alone, we want to see them go all the way through college!
As we see more and more girls rise to this level of achievement, though, we also experience a corresponding rise in our need for funding. Attending the University of Zimbabwe is only around $2,500 per year, a very reasonable price when compared to getting a college education in the United States. Yet we’ve never had so many girls attending university at one time before. We’d love your help in sending them all to university! Please join us in celebration by making a donation in support of their education, and by spreading the news about Tariro’s great work with Zimbabwean girls!