Mustardseed Junior School

Mustardseed Junior School is our new international partner primary school in Sentema, Uganda. Launching in June 2021, this eco-sustainable primary school is designed to immerse pupils in nature and is built entirely from materials mined on-site with a zero carbon footprint.



At the heart of the link between Mustardseed Junior School and Magdalen College School are shared educational goals. Alongside fostering academic excellence, both schools aim to provide their students with a broad range of extra-curricular activities in a supportive environment. Both strive to nurture pupils’ confidence and curiosity, and equip them to make positive and lasting contributions to their communities.

"Fostering a creative relationship between one of the oldest schools in England and one of the newest in Uganda will offer both student communities wonderful opportunities to learn about each other’s cultures."  

A message from
the Master

“Our partnership with the Mustardseed School has captured the imagination and even the hearts of many of us at MCS.  Resolving to build a school in a small village just outside Kampala was a brave decision. As soon as John Caird OW spoke about Mustardseed, it was obvious that this project was going to be transformative – and not only for those pioneering pupils who are beginning the first ever lessons under the school’s eco-sustainable roof. The vision is to create an education rooted (literally and metaphorically) in the local environment, one which combines active learning with a solid academic grounding.  MCS pupils and staff have been involved from the start: raising funds which are generously matched by a distinguished Old Waynflete; sharing educational goals and methods, and assisting with the website, to give just a few examples.   Now, one of the oldest schools in the world is partnered with one of the newest.  Mustardseed’s motto is ‘Start Small Grow Great,’  and MCS is proud to be part of that growth.”

Helen Pike, Master and Board Member of the Mustardseed Trust

About the Project

Mustardseed Junior School was conceived by two friends: Kenneth Buwule, a Ugandan school teacher, book editor and postgraduate scholar of peace and conflict resolution, and John Caird, a British writer and theatre director (and MCS alumnus) whose work has been performed all around the world. Kenneth and John share a deep sense of care for the health of the world in ecological and educational terms.

The name of the school is taken from the parable of the Mustardseed.  If you plant even the smallest of seeds in fertile ground, it can grow into a mighty tree that will provide a home for the birds of the air to make their nests and raise their young. Mustardseed’s mission is to provide an inspirational and practical education for young children, encouraging them to flourish and prosper in Uganda and the wider world.

The architect is Felix Holland of StudioFH in Kampala, whose innovative, ecological and economical designs have helped transform communities all round East Africa.

Making a difference

It costs £365 a year to educate a child at Mustardseed School, so just £1 a day can transform a young life for a whole year.

Your donations last year made a massive difference in Sentema, and MCS has committed to raising £200,000 for Mustardseed Junior School in the years to come.


Donate to Mustardseed School