Ruzawi School

History

history

Ruzawi School dates from the first term of 1928. Two years prior to that two fine, outstanding, Christian men decided to establish a boys' school in Southern Africa. South Africa was a possible venue but eventually it was decided to establish the school in the country then known as Southern Rhodesia, the current Zimbabwe. Various sites were visited in and around the capital but the most suitable venue was a few miles south of the then village of Marandellas, now Marondera, the Provincial Capital of East Mashonaland. The old Ruzawi Inn, for many years a staging post on the carriage and wagon route from the capital to the eastern border, was up for sale. Neither the new road nor the recently built railway passed close to the Inn, which was no longer, an essential stopping place for travelers. The bedrooms, dining room, kitchen and ancillary buildings proved ideal as both accommodation and classrooms for the newly established boys' boarding school. An important use was found for the old stable building close to the inn. It was appropriately converted into the School Chapel. The building, now over a hundred years old, is equally appropriately in use as the School Museum.

Robert Grinham and Maurice Carver, the Founders of the school, had discovered just what they were looking for and soon enlisted the services of academic and domestic staff that all had to lend a hand in converting the Inn buildings into a boys' boarding school. At that time there were no female scholars and the boys ranged in age from seven to fourteen.

Unlike many schools in Southern Africa during that period Ruzawi flourished and soon the old inn buildings proved inadequate as the number of pupils continued to rise through the early nineteen thirties. From 1932 to 1934 plans were discussed and finance arranged to replace the old buildings with the present large and imposing dormitory block. It became known as the Birchenough Building in recognition of the sterling work Sir Henry Birchenough did on behalf of the school, particularly in the field of raising funds for the new buildings. Other major events in the school's history include the building of the Robert Grinham Hall and the Maurice Carver Music School, the establishment of the Computer Centre, so important for keeping abreast of modern education, and the acceptance of girls into the school's student body in 2003.