The Regional Education Learning Initiative (RELI) is a peer learning network, comprising 70 organisations. It brings together members working to ensure inclusive learning for all children in East Africa by leveraging local knowledge and expertise to influence education policy and practice.
At this meeting, eleven boys and girls shared their difficulties and worries about their school experiences.
It became clear early in the meeting that such forums are important. It created alignment between what children need to succeed in school and how decision makers can most align to create an enabling environment for them. One of the highlights of the event was the right of students to be heard and understood and most importantly contribute to decisions that impact them in their schools and to have their views and opinions taken into consideration.
The stories shared by the children were personal, detailed, relevant and inspirational: rich conversations between all those involved. Some challenges that the students shared included: accessing clean water to drink or wash their hands, too many students in a class, absentee teachers, loud music near the classrooms, filthy toilets, small classrooms and few lessons, exposure to adult vices like drugs and alcohol around the school.