Saturday, July 12, 2014

Schools and more Schools

 There are schools and there are SCHOOLS, how about this you can learn to be a Prophet in just one week!

   I want to talk about schools here in Ghana, there is one on every corner. Everybody who has a little money starts a school  or church to make more money.
   I understand schooling is free through 3rd grade and they are trying to make it free through the 5th grade.There are lots and lots of private schools, with varying price ranges usually their competency level, correlates with the price range. For many people by the time their children are Jr. High age, they do not have enough money for their children to go to school anymore, or they go to a very inexpensive school, where maybe the teachers are not trained well or they are not required to learn. I am very surprised in Primary when I ask an older child to read, how poor their reading is. They learn their school subjects in English, and many children can hardly speak English, especially the girls.
      I think many of the parents of the children in church realize how important it is to educate their children, but I do not think many can afford really good schools, and a lot of the good schools are boarding schools which make them more expensive. Also boarding schools have their own problems , like bullying, sexual experimentation, some of them do not let students go to church, no seminary etc, etc.  When the students do graduate from High School many can not pass the tests to go on to a good University ( there is the U. of Ghana). There are many many signs and schools for remedial learning to past these test. There are hundreds of other College and Universities in town, and some are good and many not so good. The Church has PEF and even BYUI Pathways, but many of the students are not prepared in their previous 10 years for these type of classes.

My idea is that many of our chapels have a Family History Room with computers, also we have 2 Pathway sites, why not use those areas to have the Parents hire a good teacher and have the 14- 18 year olds, with good academic record and tests try an online High School Curriculum from the U.S., paired of course with seminary class and other stipulations.

Good news my Zucchini plant is coming up. My Watermelon seedlings disappeared overnight when they were about 10 inches high. I can see one of those big snail licking his lips (if they have lips).
The same happened to my cucumber plant. I don't know if it is the soil or the extreme heat. Since I have looked and looked for some fertilizer here, I guess I will never know.

When it rains Ghanaian s get undercover.  In fact one of the challenges we find with trying to make or keep an appointment is though the rain may be over, for hours, in trying to follow-up with an
appointment  the response usually is; "it rained".   Which means we will not be able to come out, because it rained.  We hope the rainy season extends itself this year as the water is needed terribly, last year was so very dry and water has to be trucked for drinking and bathing.
More of our rainy season weather ! Rainy season usually starts in June and lasts through July, we hope! It is cooler, usually and the dry sand we have here becomes moist.  Of course the roads tend to fall apart, even the paved ones grow large pot holes sometimes 12-24 inches deep, and as large as a car wide. Things tend to get wet, including us.  I try to hold an umbrella over Heidi, to keep her hair nice, but unless it is a down pour I just walk through it as the temperature being what it is the rain feels good.  
Two weeks ago  it was rumored that the government of Ghana owed a  big bill to the main supplier of fuel, which was owed for 3 years.  As a result of  impending fuel increases and the potential to profiteer from the same, lines of traffic developed of those needing gasoline and diesel.  We took this picture  two Sundays ago coming from Nsawam.  Although you may not be able to see them, the owners of the cars, about 100 are all up talking in raised voices to the station attendant, demanding fuel.   Because the rumor was it was there would be no fuel available we pulled into 6 stations, yes it was the Sabbath, trying to get fuel.  Either the station would not sell what they had or they had no fuel.  About 3 Kilometers away from our office in Accra, I felt to stop into a station where there was no traffic, to that point, those with no traffic indicated they had no fuel.  By chance I asked if the station had diesel, and he said yes, and motioned me to the pump.  While there a motorcycle pulled in and asked for gasoline.  The attendant told the cyclist there was no gas, that caused some serious verbal abuse.   Mentioned in an earlier blog was the long lines, 3 deep, both sides of the road. One station I saw had to have 200 people yelling at the attendants.

This Tuesday morning at about 2 am I started with a serious runny tummy, what I call the Ghanaian 2 step, which means you do not get more than 2 steps from "your friend the toilet".  Every few minutes I would visit my "friend".  Because Tuesday we were to attend the Kasoa Zone Training, the office leadership splits up by President Hill's assignment and goes to different Zones.  We felt a duty and responsibility to attend, as we were to assist with a emergency transfer, and we love being with the missionaries in these meetings.  I prayed and asked the Lord to help me, so I could fulfill my duty. I felt impressed to call President Hill and ask if he would give me a priesthood blessing, allowing me to fulfill my duty without complications.  Because of the distance and lack of easily available bathrooms this was a need.  We intended to leave at 7 am but it was about 8 before we felt to leave.  I did not need the bathroom until 4 pm when we arrived back at the office, at which time the runny tummy, pain and all returned for a three day visit.  I am so grateful to our Father in Heaven for this blessing and know he cares and listens to his children's prayers.  (Terry)    

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