Kagiso Trust has a long working history and relationship with schools in the Thabo Mofutsanyana District, Free State. For the past eight years, the Beyers Naude Schools Development Programme (BNSDP) has been working in partnership with the Free State Department of Education to transform under-performing schools into centres of academic excellence, focusing on management strategies of the schools, curriculum delivery and the accountability of the school governing bodies, among other interventions.
The schools’ infrastructure was handed over to six primary schools and two high schools over a two-day school walkabout. The schools received libraries, physical and life science laboratories, media and computer centres. The Beacon Secondary School achieved a 100 percent pass rate in the 2014 matric results, proving that great academic results and hard work can prevail over socio economic circumstances.
Nthabiseng Secondary School, after being awarded infrastructure in 2014, launched the Eric Molobi Media and Science Centre, named after the late Eric Molobi, who was a political stalwart and Robben Island prisoner as well as former Kagiso Trust chief executive officer. The Molobi family was represented by Eric’s daughter Naomi Ratsheko. “My father would be very proud with the academic performance of these schools and learners” she said. “Learners must take advantage of the media and science centre as it’s one of the best centres equipped with resources that will equip learners with their maths and science particles.”
The Free State MEC for Education, Tate Makgoe, addressed the Matric class of 2015 and said, “You must start dreaming now about achieving seven distinctions and not let your circumstances define your future. It’s not about how you start but how you finish. The Free State Department of Education has outlined a four step formula of success for the class of 2015. These are focus, hard work, perseverance and discipline.” The MEC also thanked the principal, the teachers, parents and community for their ongoing support.
On the second day of the infrastructure launch, the BNSDP Essay Competition winners were announced during the main ceremony held at Nexus Primary School in Harrismith.
The objective of the BNSDP Essay Competition was to engage learners on their thoughts on leadership, transformation and innovation in education. As the famous words of former president Nelson Mandela, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” In order for that weapon to be effective and change the world for the better, all involved parties have an imperative role to play. With this in mind learners were asked to write an essay, answering the question “What makes an innovative teacher?”
26 schools in the Thabo Mofutsanyana district participated in the competition and there was an overwhelming response from the learners. After a long judging process, three overall winners were selected, Nomvula Xaba and Mpatetse Maleka, both from Lekgulo Secondary School and Nokhanya Thokoa from Sekgutlong Secondary School.
Grade 12 learner, Mpatetse Maleka from Lekgulo Secondary said that, “Innovative teachers should be vibrant, energetic, passionate and must be able to introduce new ideas into the class room. I’m thankful to Kagiso Trust for selecting me as one of the winners and for building my school a science lab, computer centre and a new hall. Next year I would like to further my studies and become a meteorologist.”
“It has always been our wish to celebrate our 30 year anniversary with the very people who have made our work and longevity possible” added Themba Mola, Kagiso Trust acting chief executive officer.
About the Kagiso Trust
The long history of Kagiso Trust (KT) is entrenched in building sustainable partnerships for poverty eradication. For 30 years, KT has worked with South Africans to achieve a society which offers liberty, justice and freedom from poverty. The core business of KT is empowering poor marginalised South Africans so as to affirm their place and participation in the larger social institution. KT pursues an organisational development strategy that seeks to maximize its unique strength of relating to ordinary people, particularly in rural communities, as well as its’ considerable experience in development facilitation to identify sustainable solutions towards poverty eradication. Programmes of the Trust include the Beyers Naudé Schools Development Programme, the Eric Molobi Scholarship Programme, the Leverage Fund to assist the NGO sector, revenue management support to municipalities through Kagiso Trust Consultancy and the Kagiso Enterprises Rural Private Equity Fund for entrepreneurs. Kagiso Trust formed its own investment company, Kagiso Capital, to oversee its investments for the sustainability of the organisation. For more information, refer to www.kagiso.co.za.
About the Free State Department of Education
The Free State Department of Education strives to ensure progressive realisation of universal schooling, improving quality of education and eliminating disparities amongst Free State citizens. Our mission is to provide an education system that is free, compulsory, universal and equal for all children of the Free State Province. For more information, refer to www.education.fs.gov.za.
For more about the Kagiso Trust, refer to www.kt30years.co.za.
To view other NGO press releases, refer to www.ngopulse.org/group/home-page/pressreleases.