Last week, Chris Gates, MainSprings founder and head of our sister school in Tanzania, visited ESD's campus and met with both Middle and Upper School students. MainSprings is the organization that developed and now runs both our sister school and the girls' home on the school's campus in Kitongo, Tanzania. Unlike many traditional schools in Tanzania, the Joseph and Mary Schools focus on the development of each student as a whole in addition to the traditional academic subjects.
ESD's relationship with Mainsprings began several years ago when our Middle School World Affairs Club and Middle School science students began a Pen Pal program with the Joseph and Mary students. This letter exchange eventually turned into a more formal partnership, officially making the Joseph and Mary School and ESD sister schools.
Last summer, 10 ESD faculty and staff members traveled to Kitongo to further cultivate the relationship between the schools, sharing professional learning experiences with the schools' faculty. Chris traveled to campus to meet with teachers and students alike to spread awareness of this partnership and continue to grow the collaborative projects already in place. During his presentation, students learned more about the school and its students and were urged to think of ways to support this global citizenship. Several faculty members also spoke about their favorite parts of the trip, discussing the differences in technology and the various programs they've implemented thus far. They have also scheduled a Skype exchange next week to discuss their new permaculture project.
ESD is proud to partner with Joseph and Mary in Kitongo and looks forward to the shared learning experiences ahead. To learn more about the Joseph and Mary School, visit the Mainsprings website or the ESD website.