A school day with Diana


A documentary film by Dominik Lehnert & Frank Mueller



The people of South Sudan are considered as the poorest of the poor worldwide. Nowhere else it is so hard to grow up as a child. For a long period of time children were not able to learn reading and writing at all. Even though the situation has improved, there is still a great need for well-trained teachers, scholastic materials as well as proper school buildings. For almost one third of the Southern Sudanese children, lessons take place in the open air. But to ensure a peaceful future for the people of South Sudan, the majority of the children have to receive quality primary education.

This is also the case at Ginyapoli Primary School, where schooling is reduced to a minimum. The documentary A SCHOOL DAY WITH DIANA reflects one day in the life of a 13 years old Sudanese schoolgirl, which stands exemplary for many other girls in South Sudan. Diana is talking about her everyday life, the lessons at school, her future wishes, dreams and fears. The film gives a deep insight into the simple lifestyle: living with an extended family in a tukul (local hut), the every day way to school, her lessons and the work Diana has to do for her family before and after school. Dianas example shows how hard it is to achieve one of the Millennium Development Goals, ‘primary education for all’. Until the year 2015 all children all over the world, girls and boys, shall be able to complete a full and high quality primary education. A SCHOOL DAY WITH DIANA stands as an example for countries, which have not yet achieved this goal, due to poverty or as in South Sudan due to a long lasting civil war.

Background South Sudan: As result of one of the longest civil wars in Africa, Sudan and especially the population of Southern Sudan is considered as one of the poorest of the poor. South Sudan is listed amongst the least developed countries in the world; many places are without any infrastructure at all. Primary health care systems, roads bridges and schools were almost entirely destroyed by over 20 years of civil war. Since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in January 2005, between the SPLA/M (Sudan People Liberation Movement/Army) and the Government of North Sudan, the newly formed Government of South Sudan in cooperation with international organizations was able to improve a lot for the sake of their people, however the establishment of a well functioning and effective primary education system will still take some time. Still occurring conflicts caused by internal ethnical division and through violence caused by the Ugandan LRA (Lord Resistance Army), are hindering the process additionally.