Lulu High School (Lulu means “Diamond” in Suaheli) is a secondary school for Form 1 to Form 4. The plot covers nearly 5,5 acres and lies in the neighbourhood of LPS. Since 2005, the school provides excellent education for up to 200 students, preparing them the best possible way for a working career or university studies.
Lulu High belongs to the Top 100 secondary schools in Kenya (out of approx. 5000), having achieved the “National School” status in its first year of KCSE exams in 2007.
The picture shows a camera team shooting for the show “Volle Kanne” of German TV ZDF in July 2007 (to be found on this website under the menu item “Downloads”).
ZDF camera team at Lulu High School
On a hot day in March 2004, the foundation stone for Lulu High School was laid, the 3rd school of Mekaela Academies. Simone and Gerd Blanke had made dreams come true. After performances by the children a tree was planted, and a brick containing a pipe with Kenya Shilling and Euro coins and newspapers from Kenya and Germany was laid into the foundation.
Just one year later Lulu High School was officially opened, an incredible achievement by Gerd Blanke. During a solemn ceremony Dr. Schleifer from the main donor Damp Holding AG had the honourable duty to declare the school as opened.
LHS Inauguration 2005
The fancy school uniforms of the young ladies of Lulu High School on washing day. At first, the girls were not too keen with the design – until the ladies kept receiving compliments for their elegant appearance in town.
Now, the “Lulu High fashion look” is in.
Lulu High School School uniforms
We christened our project logo “Amina”. The children love to sketch the logo, and are proud to wear their “Amina” badges. Everyone easily recognizes the logo – good for a very young girl of LPS who got lost in a neighbouring village. A lady identified the emblem at once and immediately returned her to school. Logo der Mekaela Academies
In 2005, these eight teachers made sure that LHS pupils will be able to find an open door of a college or a university for them.
At the opening, only 25 students were at LHS. During the next few years, their number reached 150, and thebody of teachers more than doubled.
The main gate of LHS, as seen from the LPS compound. The plots of the two schools are located next to each other, but the students have very little contact with each other.
This picture is evidence how beautifully the first building of LHS harmonizes with the trees of the plot. As many trees as possible are conserved during construction, not the least because they offer much appreciated shade.
LHS main building
In April 2005, only eight boys were living in the dorms of LHS. There was plenty of room for each of them, but they decided they all wanted to sleep together in one room. It feels cosier, and supports unity of the group.
LHS the boys’ dormitory
The house of the LHS head-teacher, the so called “principal”. According to Kenyan law, at least the head-teacher of a boarding-school has to live on the premises of the school for security reasons.
The architect’s applied new ways of interpreting geometry – a touch of Mr. Hundertwasser.
The principle’s home
Sunday morning, the day after the opening ceremony: tourists from Duesseldorf and Nairobi pour in (Karibu, Peter).
A few impressions from Lulu High School, also captured on the day after the opening ceremony:
The, well, reception …
… the computer class of LHS.
The photo was taken immediately after the equipment was installed. The classroom has to be fitted with glass windows and air-conditioning, otherwise the computers won’t last for long.
The chemistry lab. Thanks to HelpAlliance of Lufthansa the lab now has a concrete ceiling, equipment and all materials you need to conduct some decent chemistry lessons. The physics lab has undergone a similar upgrade, partly financed by HelpAlliance as well.
The LHS gallery.
Fire extinguishers are mandatory, but we also want to establish our own school fire brigade by training the older students in fire fighting. Because of the makuti roofs which are on most buildings, fire protection is taken very serious at Mekaela Academies.
Security is a very important issue in Kenya. A significant number of watchmen is on duty at every school of Mekaela Academies at night and at daytime. Trained dogs guard the boarding schools as intruder detectors, they are much better than humans. Our “Askaris” are true heroes: albeit their meagre pay they risk their lives to protect the children every day. The danger is quite real for them: so far one watchman was killed by burglars during an night raid of one of our schools.
LHS Security Officer
For many years, the students have suffered and struggled. The parents and sponsors have invested time and money, worries and dedication. Now their children hold a certificate of one of Kenya’s best secondary schools in their hands, and universities and colleges are open to them.
The meaning of this graduation day is that they now have the opportunity to achieve a better life for themselves and their families by their own means – as doctors or engineers, as lawyers or teachers, as pilots or journalists. Now, on this very special day, we all know what it was good for. And that we would do it again any time.