January 2019 - Meet a Very Unusual Tanzanian Woman
Growing up, Grace Benedict (aka, Madame Grace to the students) aspired to be an engineer, like her father. Yet, when she was accepted at teacher's college, she decided to attend.
She taught science for many years at St.Jude's School, a top non-government school in Arusha. There she first heard of Mr. Bayo, founder of Tumaini Schools. The two corresponded for some time and they finally arranged to meet in person, Madame Grace had no idea that it was a job interview. They spent hours discussing Tumaini and her various teaching experiences. When Mr Bayo concluded by offering her the position of Head of School, Madame Grace was stunned. She accepted on the spot and started in late 2017.
Head of School is a position predominantly held by men in Tanzania, but she has grown in the job and has been welcomed at the school.
The female students enjoy having a head mistress and feel more comfortable in their school environment as a result. Madame Grace approaches her position with compassion.
Judith, a sixth grade student, commented that, "Sometimes there are things that I only feel comfortable telling another girl about, not a boy. I can always speak to Madame Grace"