As we continue to invest in the advancement of quality education for girls in Africa through partnerships, we are pleased to announce our education partnership with Bridge International Academies! Bridge is a network of schools which began in Kenya in 2007. Through partnerships, Bridge aims to ensure more children have access to an education. To achieve this they support government schools and also run community schools. With schools in Nigeria, Uganda, Libera, Kenya and India, Bridge believes that girls should have the same opportunities as boys; sadly they face many more barriers. Empowering and supporting girls to succeed in the classroom to fulfill their potential in life is essential. Families, communities, and nations need educated girls to prosper and grow.
Bridge is proud to empower women and build confident, successful girls. They improve opportunities for girls in and out of the classroom with their gender-sensitive instruction, gender-sensitive school management, co-curriculars, and commitment to accountability.
In creating powerful role models, as women are at the centre of many of our communities, Bridge believe that by empowering women girls can be empowered. Strong female role models can be found in their classrooms, Parent Teacher Associations and organization.
In Kenya, Bridge created the ‘Super Mama’ programme. Each academy selects ‘Super Mamas’, who are closely involved with the school to work on empowerment programmes and act as role models. Super Mamas are the voice of their communities and contribute to planning and decision making at Bridge academies. They encourage communities to learn from each other and have even held national women leadership conferences to enable Super Mamas to come together, share experiences and, take new knowledge back to their communities.
In addition, Super Mamas continue to work in their communities by supporting other women in starting new businesses; creating forums around important issues, and; by acting as leaders. Various projects that have been lead by Super Mamas include the provision of sanitary pads to our pupils; supporting school feeding programmes, and; helping other parents with financial planning.
Bridge also takes a holistic approach to gender-equitable teaching and lesson design. Their focus on helping girls grow in the classroom can be seen in their successful metrics:
In 2018, boys outperformed girls nationally in the Ugandan primary school leaving exam (PLE), but not at Bridge schools. Bridge girls performed better than boys, both within Bridge and nationally. Nationally, boys are 9% more likely than girls to be in Division 1 & 2. At Bridge, girls are 5% more likely than boys to be in Division 1 & 2.
In Kenya’s 2017 national exit exam (KCPE), Bridge girls earned an additional 17 points above and beyond the national average for girls that year (out of 500 possible points).
In 2017, girls who had attended a Bridge academy for over five years were our highest performing KCPE cohort, averaging 287 marks.
Since 2015, the number of female pupils passing their KCPE has increased by over 20%.
In Uganda’s 2017 national exit exam (PLE), 95% of Bridge girls were placed in Division 1 and 2 (top scores) with only 62% of girls nationally achieving this status. Our female pupils in Uganda were almost two and a half times more likely to achieve Division 1 or Division 2 than girls across eastern Uganda.
In Liberia, 68% of Bridge girls (compared with only 42% at local comparison schools) who couldn’t read a single word at the beginning of the year, could read by the end of the year.
Ten Bridge graduates in Kenya have won full scholarships to high schools in the US and of this, seven of them were girls. They are now receiving straight A’s at their respective high schools.
We are committed to helping Bridge achieve their goal to empower girls through quality education and end the cycle of poverty and gender equality. Find out more about Bridge International Academies and ways that you can support their mission by visiting BridgeInternationalAcademies.com