Girls’ College’s boarding facilities offer students from outside of Bulawayo the opportunity to attend the College while providing a positive platform for development through the teenage years within a secure and structured environment. The administration and efficient running of a large hostel complex inevitably depends on the close co-operation between the school, parents and boarding students. This sub-section contains information that parents and boarding students will need to know and is divided into Hostel Facilities, Administration and Personal :-
Boarders are homed, according to their seniority, in one of three lovely large converted homes within the school premises, all within walking distance of the classrooms, but far away enough for the girls to feel like they can get away from school at the end of the day. Each house is set in lush private gardens where the girls are able to relax and socialise in their free time.
Girls are assigned to dormitory style rooms in each of the large houses, the number of girls per room varies according to the house they are in and the room size, but by 6th form, girls will typically have their own rooms. Ordinarily, Girls' College allocates places in each house according to seniority so that boarders are socialising with their peers. If a student would like to share rooms with particular friends they need to place a request, in writing, to their hostel Superintendent who will endeavour to grant such requests if possible. Boarding students are allowed to decorate their rooms. Pictures, posters (limited to 2 per student) and small ornaments are permitted, but the school cannot accept liability for the possible loss and / or damage of these items.
Boarders all dine together at the main school Dining Hall for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Catering is outsourced to a specialised catering company, and any specific dietary requirements can be tailored to.
There is also a tuck shop on site that operates during school hours and at weekends for boarder girls to purchase tuck.
Girls' College employs a trained sister to run the school's Sick Bay. All student medications must be handed into the Sick Bay and students are required to hand in their medical aid card or a photocopy as well. Special medications must be accompanied with detailed instructions on their usage or application. Basic medications, such as aspirin, are supplied by Girls' College. Parents are advised to not provide their daughters with sundry tablets or non-essential medicines to bring to school.
Girls are free to make use of school facilities such as the tennis courts and swimming pool, under supervision, during the weekends. Regular social activities are arranged for girls who remain in hostel at weekends, such as movie nights and outings, and a bus service operates to ferry girls to Church services on a Sunday, for those who wish to attend.
The rules and procedures detailed under this section are in place to maintain the smooth running of the school's hostel complex and to provide boarders with a structured and comfortable environment during their stay.
A Hostel Superintendent, who is a professional member of the teaching staff, is in charge of the hostel complex at Girls' College. Falling under the superintendent are a number of resident matrons or 'house-mothers' placed in charge of each hostel and are on duty during the week and weekends. Each resident matron is assisted by school prefects who are allocated to each hostel. When a resident matron is off-duty they are replaced by a relief matron.
Parent Hostel Superintendent Meetings
If parents need to meet with the Hostel Superintendent for any reason, they can arrange to do so by appointment between 12:10 and 13:10 on Fridays. Any meetings will take place in the Superintendent's hostel office.
For one hour, between 18:30 and 19:30, junior boarding students undertake a homework period supervised by hostel prefects at the main school. This is in addition to their afternoon prep sessions. Senior boarding students are allowed to work in their own rooms.
Exeats And Weekend Leave
Boarders are allowed to be taken off school premises every weekend, subject to compulsory school commitments, if they wish. All boarders who would like to leave for the weekend must be registered for weekend leave any time from Monday through to Thursday between 9:00am and 12:00pm, but no later than 12:15pm Thursday afternoon of the week prior to the leave. Failure to do so may preclude the boarding student from being allowed to leave. Boarding students are not permitted to leave with anyone other than parents or any other adult persons specifically designated to do so on the student's visiting list. The person, or persons, booking the student out must sign the pupil out and back in at the end of the leave in the Hostel Register. This person, or persons, then assumes total responsibility for the student until they are signed back in to the school hostel. If a student will be traveling on public transport for weekend leave, they are allowed to sign themselves out with the written permission of the parent or guardian. Girls' College allows boarding students to be signed back in on Monday morning by no later than 7:00am, however if this is abused, students will lose this privilege and must sign back in by 5:00pm Sunday afternoon. Boarding students leaving for the weekend must sign out and return in uniform, including those using public transport.
If a boarding student has any sporting, cultural or academic commitments over a weekend these taken precedence over any exeat or weekend leave arrangements. In addition Girls' College requires every student to attend two or three school events every term which also take precedence.
During the week boarding students are allowed to leave the school premises, having been given signed permission by the Hostel Superintendent, if they do not have any afternoon school commitments. Boarding students are allowed to go to the nearby Zonkizizwe Shopping Centre unsupervised. However, visits to Bulawayo city centre must be done with the supervision of an adult on the student's visiting list. A bus is available to transport boarding students to Bulawayo city centre on Friday afternoons, but students must be in parties of three or more. If parents do not wish their daughter to go into town or to Zonkizizwe Shopping Centre they must inform the Hostel Superintendent in writing.
Visitors And Visiting Times
Boarding students are allowed visitors, but these must be approved by their parents and must appear on the student's Visitors List. Visitors will be required to sign a Visitor's Book each time they visit the school.
Visiting times for visitors are weekends between 3:30pm and 5:00pm.
Boarders are allowed to receive telephone calls in the hostels, but only from parents and Girls' College asks parents to confine calls to once a week.
In the case of an emergency parents may call the school offices on (+263) - 9 - 258118 / 9 during office hours or the Hostel Superintendent on (+263) - 9 - 250839 in the evenings.
The rules and procedures detailed in this section are in place as a guide for boarders on a more personal level.
All clothing brought into the hostels by boarding students must be marked with the student's name using printed name tape. Unmarked clothing that goes missing is impossible to trace. Clothes will be checked at the beginning of each term and unmarked clothing will be returned to parents for marking. Clothing failing subsequent checks will be confiscated and a fine will be charge per garment for retrieval. Confiscated clothing that is not claimed will be sold for contribution to hostel funds. Printed name tapes are available from local clothing stores or hostel matrons can place orders on the behalf of students.
Girls' College suggests the following:-
- 6 bras
- 6 panties
- 5 pairs of socks / stockings
- 1 pair of black shoes
- 4 school uniforms (minimum)
- 1 blazer (with embroided badge)
- 3 school jerseys
- 1 school track suit
- 1 school hat
- 1 pair of tennis shoes or track shoes
- 1 pair of hockey boots (for students who will be playing hockey)
- 1 sports kit or 2 if student will be playing a lot of sport
- 1 white golf shirt (with school logo)
- 1 navy blue swimming costume (for summer)
- 2 swimming towels
- 3 vests or spencers (for winter)
- 3 nighties or pyjamas (essential)
- 1 dressing gown
- 1 casual track suit
- 1 casual bathing costume (for summer)
- 1 laundry bag
- 2 hand towels (marked with name)
- 2 bath towels (marked with name)
- 1 house T-shirt (can be purchased from school Thrift Shop)
- 1 duvet
- 3 duvet covers
- 3 sheets
- 1 pillow
- 3 pillow cases
- 1 blanket (for winter)
- Coat hangers
- Sanitary towels
- Shoe cleaning kit
- Sponge bag
- Any other necessary toiletries
- A maximum of 4 casual outfits (including casual shoes), e.g. 4 dresses or 4 tops and 4 skirts, jeans & 4 jerseys / jackets
Please note that it is essential that your daughter(s) has nighties or pyjamas, slippers and a dressing gown as the occasion may arise when she may have to spend time in the Sick Bay.
Please make sure all clothes are clearly marked. Unmarked clothing will be sent home.
Parents are responsible for any air or bus bookings. Transport to and from the airport or a bus station will be provided by Girls' College only for official exeat weekends or at the beginning and end of term, fuel permitting. If this is required the Hostel Superintendent must be given prior notice.
In order to circumvent the perennial problem of boarders' pocket money, Girls' College encourages boarders to open Ecobank accounts as they can access the Ecobank banking services and ATM facilities at Zonkizizwe Shopping Centre on Fridays when they go shopping. Students can also use the Ecocash facility that the Econet cell phone network offers.
Any boarding student requiring a special diet for religious or heath reasons must submit a letter, containing details, to their hostel matron. The school will then try to accommodate genuine requests.
Bad behaviour and untidiness in the hostels by boarding students is not tolerated. Bad behaviour will be reported to parents directly.