Student's & Teacher's Memories

From Mary Robinson - a former student of Unity High School 1953-54 - received on 2nd August 2017:

I attended Unity High School for eighteen months in 1953 and 1954, when my father commanded the British Army hospital, and I was eight to nine years old.  At the beginning I was in the junior section and then, when I was about nine, I moved up.

I recall travelling to and from school in an army lorry fitted with basic seats and steps at the back.  It was not very comfortable!  I can't remember the exact school hours but I know that we started very early and finished at lunchtime.  The summer holidays were rather long, so my father organised extra classes in a building in the hospital grounds, much to my dismay.  The other Army children weren't very impressed either...

I have looked at pictures of the school in your Archive and only one looks familiar.  That is of a simple row of small rooms with a narrow verandah outside.  It reminds me of the junior section.  When I moved up, it was to a classroom on the other side of an open space.  My parents wanted me to study French but were told that Arabic was the first other language that was taught, and if I studied that I could also learn French.  They thought that might be too much for me and so I started to learn Arabic.  The lessons were held in a different area, where I think there were many classrooms set around a green and shady garden, which was pleasantly cooling. I loved the beauty of the Arabic script but, unfortunately, we moved away to Egypt before I had time to learn enough to be useful.  I'm sorry that I can't remember the names of any of my teachers - by the time I was eighteen I had attended fourteen schools, so I had forgotten many of their names.

I do recall very vividly, however, something that I was told by a few of my local classmates, and which has stayed with me ever since.  This was that they felt that it was a privilege to go to school, that they were very grateful that their fathers had given them the opportunity to be educated and that, for them, it represented freedom.  I was both astonished and impressed, and it made me appreciate my own, taken-for-granted opportunities all the more.

I only found your site this evening and it brought memories of Khartoum flooding back. It is now one o'clock in the morning!  Thank you for the Archive - I will study it in more detail over the coming weeks.

From Fedwa Alnour - a former student of Unity High School 1976-80 - received on 17th July 2016:

I am Fedwa Alnour. I attended the school from 1976 to 1980.I have many fond memories of that school, especially with our dedicated teachers.I remember Miss Linecker our math teacher and the headmistress Miss Clegg.I hope I have the spelling right.

My classmates were fun to be with and I will always cherish my times with them.

From Beth Weldon Trestrail - a former student of Unity High School 1962-63 - received on 12th January 2012:

"My family lived in Khartoum from July 1962 until June, 1963, and I attended Unity High School for Girls at that time. My father taught electronics at Khartoum Technical Institute under the auspices of the USAID Program, and we lived in KTI housing in Khartoum. I rode the bus to school. I attended Unity under my maiden name, Elizabeth H. Weldon.

"When I attended Unity I was the only American student. I was particular friends with Azza and Sara Aniz, sisters who lived in Khartoum. We spent our break times playing ping pong and they tried, with little success, to teach me Arabic. I remember very clearly studying French (and how warm our classroom was, since there was no air conditioning). At the awards ceremony our French class sang A La Claire Fontaine.

"I was so pleased to see photographs from this event. However, I do not recognize anyone at all from the photos tentatively dated December 1962. It seems to me that the uniform skirts are fuller and shorter than when I attended Unity, although the squared neck and white belts were the same. I believe these photos may actually be from December 1963 or later.

"Please keep up the good work with archives of Unity online - it is so wonderful for me to look back at the photos and remember the wonderful time I had there. If I can locate any photographs of myself from this time, I'll scan them and send them to you."

From Rebecca Kelly - a former student of Unity High School 1960-61 - received on 8th January 2012:

"I had an intriguing time wandering through the Unity High School web site.  I was a painfully shy student there for 1-2 years, before being transferred to the newly established American Embassy School.

"In the 1970s, I worked on a memoire /manuscript, Mad Dogs and Diplomats, about the first two years of living in Khartoum.  It contains an adventure or two which occurred while I was at Unity High, including a locust "invasion" circa 1960 and a little dog which fellow student Dorothy Wise and I "smuggled" into the school compound, hoping to keep it.   Of course we were found out!

"I would be very pleased if you could put me in touch with someone who could tell me what the daily curriculum was back in the 1960-62 period."

From Aida Sayed Mohamed Hassouna - a former student of Unity High School 1976 - received on 1st February 2011:

"My name is Aida Sayed Mohamed Hassouna. I was a student at your school until the last 12th grade in 1976. Arts Section. I had good memories, one of them was the visit of Princess Ann to the school at that time and we had some dancing activities. My pleasant teachers, Ms. Zeinab of history and Ms. Xinkas of home economics and Ms. Linikre of English language. I visited her in her home town in Britain. I left for Birmingham that time and I was lucky that Ms. Zeinab was my neighbour there at the same time. Where are these people!!!"