(Download this report in PDF format here)
As the FSTP moves from planning into design and implementation, it is being renamed Bhabhathane which means “butterfly” in isiXhosa. The butterfly symbolises transformation and joy. Its metamorphosis shows that change ensures growth. We have to shed the cocoon of the old before we can become something new. But this can only happen when conditions are right; new ideas and activities will only flourish when conditions are right. That is when transformation can occur.
FRANSCHHOEK SCHOOLS TRANSFORMATION PROJECT
Our valley is where green things spring alive.
And sun, wind, rain enable them to thrive.
The farmers and their toilers use God’s earth
To bring rich crops of food and wine to birth.
But richest crop of all the valley bears
Is found in schools where those yet green in years
Are helped by cultivators of the mind
The wherewithal of fruitful lives to find.
By zest and energy transformed each day
May all our schools inspire, we dream and pray,
Young hearts to be what they were born to be,
To soar to lives of service, hope-filled, free.
- Management Summary 1
- Background to FSTP 5
- Scope and Objectives of Planning Phase 6
- Vision, Mission and Goals for Education in Franschhoek 8
- Current Status of Schools in Franschhoek 9
5.1 South African Educational Context 9
5.2 Summary of Current Status in Schools 10
5.3 Focus Areas in Schools and Target Profile in the Medium Term 10
5.4 Change Readiness 30
- Current Status of Early Childhood Development centres in Franschhoek32
6.1 Target Profile of ECD in the Medium Term 35
- The Ten Highest Priority Projects 37
7.1 Early Childhood Development 40
7.2 Teacher Enrichment 44
7.3 Principal Enrichment 47
7.4 Special Needs 49
7.5 Parental Involvement 50
7.6 Transport 52
7.7 Educational Resource Centre 52
7.8 Food Provision 54
7.9 Class Size 55
7.10 ICT 56
7.11 Quick Wins 59
- Summary of 10 Priority Projects Estimated Costs 60
- Implementation Approach and Project Bar Chart 62
- Project Organisation for Design and Implementation Phases 64
I. School Survey Report
II. Project Planning Phase Approach, Organisation and Leadership
- MANAGEMENT SUMMARY
The Franschhoek Valley is a uniquely beautiful location which has established itself as a premier tourist destination and a leading wine-producing area. It is home to approximately twenty thousand people which is a microcosm of South African society in a contained geographical area. As such, Franschhoek Valley is an ideal place to implement new ideas and solutions involving the community which, once proven, can be rolled out to other areas.
Franschhoek Valley is not immune from the national crisis in the South African education system, as epitomised by high drop-out rates, poor pass rates, and extreme differences in the quality of learning being achieved. More than a year ago, the Franschhoek Schools Transformation Project (FSTP) was initiated with the objective of transforming the twenty Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres and the seven schools in the Valley. This report represents the output of the Planning Phase of that project, which will be followed by the Design and Implementation of high priority projects, as selected by the Steering Committee.
Education on its own cannot solve the many problems in our society; unemployment and the need for vocational skills development are equally pressing matters. It was however decided to restrict the scope of the FSTP to education in the belief that improvements would have the largest benefit for the wider community.
There are nineteen private ECD centres within the valley, not attached to a school, which every day care for more than 600 children aged between three and six. All are within the scope of the project. It is estimated that some 500 children of ECD age are not enrolled at all.
There are seven primary and secondary schools at which some 4 500 learners are enrolled and who are taught by some 250 teachers. Of the 7 schools, five are categorised as “Quintile 1” by the Western Cape Education Department (WCED), which represents their lowest income category and are therefore non-fee-paying, one is categorised as “Quintile 4” and is fee-paying, and one is an independent school. The seven schools within the scope of FSTP are: Bridge House, Dalubuhle Primary, Groendal Primary, Groendal Secondary, Franschhoek High, Wemmershoek Primary and Wes-Eind Primary.
In the 18 years since 1994 there have been four Ministers of Education, a large proportion of the national budget has been allocated to education, five new curricula have been introduced and then changed, and countless textbooks have been provided and then replaced. Some of the early curriculum changes were simply unworkable as a result of undue haste to make a political statement, insufficient research, an array of new terms and acronyms and insufficient understanding of the teachers’ ability to implement the changes. Despite all this apparent effort, there has been little or no improvement in the education of most South African children and some prominent people are quoted as saying that it has deteriorated since 1994.
FSTP therefore starts from a position where the history of change and improvement to education is not a pretty one, and where further change could well be greeted by despondence. The following needs to be accepted as the starting point:
- Teacher morale is not high and may even be described as cynical or hopeless
- The job of the principal is increasingly demanding requiring skills of parent, educator, social worker, human resources manager, financial manager and many others. They often have to work with inexperienced School Governing Bodies (SGB’s), and are exposed to poor matric and systemic results which are less their fault but caused by the circumstances of the communities they serve.
- Many of the children at the schools in the valley are plagued by all the things which make learning difficult:
o Poor nutrition
o Inadequate housing
o Parental indifference
o Parental illiteracy
o Substance abuse of several kinds
o Absence of role models
o Negative peer pressure
o Gangs, violence, and so on.
Achievement of FSTP’s objectives against this background is an enormous task which will require enormous resolve, but it is possible. The project will need a long life and sustainability is the key.
Who is Involved
The project has been overseen by the FSTP Steering Committee which comprises the principals of the seven schools, chaired by Mr Lance Cyster, Principal of Wes-Eind Primary. Additional members of the committee include Mr Ernest Messina who represents the Franschhoek Valley Transformation Charter, Mr Rowan Smith and Mr Jim Lees.
Reporting to the Steering Committee, the project is being directed by Mr Alastair Wood, local resident, who is widely experienced in projects of this nature within the corporate sector. He is supported by Ms Jennifer Court, experienced educationalist in private and public sectors, particularly in development roles, and a number of part-time members of the project team who bring to bear skills in ICT, Change Management and Communications. Expert educationalists are frequently consulted.
A close working relationship has been developed with the WCED to ensure that FSTP efforts are in line with those of the department. In addition, relationships have been forged with numerous NGO’s who work within education in order to identify opportunities to work together and to take advantage of work already done.
Work Done in the Planning Phase
FSTP’s Vision and Mission for the seven schools were developed at the start of the Planning Phase last year. The Vision reads: “We are a partnership of interdependent schools promoting lifelong learning and wellness which will improve the quality of life of all our people in our community”.
Some of the key words in FSTP’s Mission are:
- “sharing resources” (among schools)
- “learning from each other”
- “creating a learning community”
- “taking responsibility for our environment”
- “addressing all five dimensions of human development and well-being, namely:
o Schools’ ethos, culture and values’ system
FSTP seed capital was provided by two donors to enable the project to proceed to a point where the priority areas for action were identified. The Valley’s ECD centres were surveyed and a team of highly experienced educationalists were brought in to survey the schools in order to provide a clear and objective definition of all aspects of their current status. Thirty six focus areas were identified during the survey in which work is required to achieve specific objectives. This work has been packaged into twenty two projects from which the top 10 highest priority projects were selected.
Highest Priority Projects and Estimated Resources
The following project areas have been identified by the Steering Committee as having the highest priority:
- Early Childhood Development (ECD) – upskilling and standardising curricula across the Valley’s ECD centres
- Teacher Enrichment – teacher training, personal development and achieving the required level of time on task
- Principal Enrichment – coaching and mentoring principals to empower them to deal with the multiplicity of challenges they face
- Special Needs – provision of professional support to teachers to deal with special needs learners
- Parental Involvement – empowering parents and mentoring SGBs
- Transport – provision of improved transport facilities to assist learners getting to, from and between schools and to other destinations
- Educational Resource Centre – establishment of “centres of excellence” at which teachers can receive training and those who teach the same phase/subject can share experiences. The Centre could potentially evolve in the future into a building which contains a teachers’ library, and ICT Centre for training and support of the schools, meeting rooms and so on
- Food Provision – revisiting and supplementing the existing approach to feeding learners
- Class Size – providing assistance to teachers to cope with classes which have more than 30 learners
- ICT – enhancing the capability and reliability of existing technology and moving towards the model of classroom-based technology to support e-Learning and e-Teaching.
On-going focus will be placed on the management of change and its impact on people affected by it, as well as communications with the large number of audiences who have an interest in education.
It is estimated that the financial resources required to design, implement and support these projects in the operational environment will be between R7 million and R12 million per annum.
These figures are in 2013 Rands and exclude costs associated with time of teaching staff.
The targeted benefits of these ten projects will be:
- Full enrolment of all children in the Valley in centres/schools that are well-equipped and well-maintained
- Cross-valley networks consisting of teachers, SGBs and Principals from ECD through the schools for sharing of expertise and best practice.
- All Principals and teachers committed to on-going professional and personal development. In particular, a willingness to extend the school day to include meaningful extra-curricular activities for the learners. This should positively impact learner attendance, retention and dropout rates. On the assumption that the current enrolment figures suggest a 40% dropout rate in the Valley between Grade 1 and 12, a realistic target is to reduce this to less than 20% in the next three years
- Parents invested in their children’s education and actively involved in the school
- A standardised curriculum of excellence at both the ECD and school levels to improve competency in Literacy and Numeracy to well above the Provincial averages, as measured by the WCED standardised tests. An improvement in the performance of learners in the National Senior Certificate examinations from 70% to a 100% pass rate and a 60% Bachelor pass rate is envisaged. An increase to 60% of learners taking Mathematics and Science to Grade 12 is the target
- Effective partnerships with NGOs and the WCED to assist teachers with special needs learners
- An efficient transport service enabling all learners to get to and from school, attend extra-curricular events as well as educational excursions and camps
- Satellite centres of excellence established at individual schools and/or an Educational Resource Centre to be used by all stakeholders in the school community
- A feeding scheme providing the poorest children in the Valley with up to two healthy meals a day during the school year
- Class size ratios of not more than 1:20 at the ECD level and 1:30 at the school level
- Schools that are well-resourced with regard to technology and ICT is integrated with teaching and learning
A further eleven projects were considered to be secondary in priority to the above and will be undertaken in due course. Immediate action has been taken in those areas which represent “Quick Wins” in order to deliver early benefits at minimal cost to the project and without deflecting it from its primary purpose. Examples are: 120 Grade 1’s at Dalubuhle Primary were vision tested and those in need are receiving spectacles and/or treatment; a cross-school newsletter is being developed and training is due to be given to principals to assist in their use of tablets provided by WCED.
The Action Plan
The FSTP Project Plan was signed off by the Steering Committee during June, 2013. It indicates the relative priorities of manageable pieces of work to be undertaken by a combination of school and project team personnel over the next three to five years. Those projects which have significant benefits and a minimum impact on critical resources, including teachers, will be undertaken first. Projects with a relatively greater impact on teachers, principals and SGB’s will be undertaken in parallel but at a speed which respects the many demands placed on their time.
The stated objective will be that the project team will be disbanded at the end of three years, by which time the first ten projects will have been implemented, and the changed processes embedded within on-going ECD and school operations.
It is the objective that FSTP is sustainable beyond the design and implementation projects once the project teams are disbanded. This means that:
- The changes implemented are deeply ingrained in the day-to-day structures within the schools and that efforts to achieve identified targets continue after the disbanding of the project team.
- From a financial perspective, there is confidence that the incremental costs associated with the project can continue to be covered.
Making sure that the changes become deeply rooted is the responsibility of individual projects using a variety of change management approaches which are dealt with in this document. Making sure that adequate funding is available to cover incremental costs is a function of the following:
- The degree to which the WCED and/or national Department of Education would be prepared to contribute funds on the basis that this is a worthwhile project which can be of benefit to other clusters/areas.
- The extent to which fundraising activities are successful in generating an on-going flow of funds, rather than only a one-time injection
- The extent to which schools themselves will be able to generate funds through initiatives such as selling services to the community (e.g. from the use of Educational Resource Centre), charging for the use of their facilities in their expanded role within the community, and specific projects such as the establishment of tuck shops.
- BACKGROUND TO FSTP
The Franschhoek Valley Transformation Charter was launched at the NG Kerk in Franschhoek on 16 February, 2012 by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu. This event was the culmination of a two-year process of thought and discussion undertaken by a group of some 30 local people from all walks of life, representative of the entire Franschhoek Valley community. The aim of this group was to pro-actively facilitate transformation in the Valley.
Education is the most obvious example of the disparities which exist in the community as well as being the crucible in which skills, attitudes and personalities are developed. Added to this is the wide acknowledgement that the public education system in South Africa is in a poor state. A July, 2011 report in the Economist magazine by Education Without Borders stated: “As long as South Africa continues to graduate generations of young people without basic education and opportunities for honest work, the country will continue adrift, vulnerable to social unrest, HIV, and crime. It is essential for the future of South Africa that South Africa’s educated black and white elite take note, and begin aggressively putting resources towards education and job creation. The country’s enormous wealth and education divide is not sustainable; to ignore this reality is pure folly.”
It is against this background that the Franschhoek Schools Transformation Project (FSTP) was initiated. In addition, it was felt that Franschhoek represents a microcosm of South African society which could provide an area of manageable scale in which ideas could be implemented with a view to their future wider rollout.
Two important national planning initiatives recently completed have provided valuable input to FSTP. They are the National Development Plan prepared by the National Planning Commission under the chairmanship of Trevor Manuel and the National Education Plan prepared by the Department of Basic Education.
This report is the output of the Planning Phase of FSTP which, once approved, will form the basis of numerous projects which will collectively achieve the agreed transformation objectives.
- SCOPE AND OBJECTIVES OF PLANNING PHASE
The seven schools in the Valley are within the scope of the project. They are Bridge House, Dalubuhle Primary, Franschhoek High School, Groendal Primary, Groendal Secondary, Wemmershoek Primary, and Wes-Eind Primary which together have about 4 500 learners and some 250 teachers. In addition, the nineteen ECD Centres located within the same geographical area are within scope, as well as the adult education being conducted within the Valley.
The objective of the first phase of the project, the Planning Phase, is to develop a pragmatic action plan which will identify the work to be undertaken to achieve quantified objectives across the ECD centres and schools which will bring about the desired level of transformation. Specifically, the objectives are:
- To agree the Vision, Mission and Goals for education in the valley
- To understand the current status within each ECD and school in terms of the quality of education being offered
- To develop specific, achievable objectives for ECD, for individual schools and for the Valley as a whole which can be attained within five years
- To identify the top ten projects which should be undertaken to deliver these benefits, including the estimated resources which will be required
- To implement quick wins where feasible to deliver benefits in the short term while adding to the credibility of the initiative but not deflecting from the overriding objectives
- To provide a platform from which fund raising efforts may be launched.
The Planning Phase is expected to be completed by July, 2013 where after design and implementation projects will be undertaken for the high priority projects.
- VISION, MISSION AND GOALS FOR EDUCATION IN FRANSCHHOEK
Through regular meetings between the Heads and the Chairs of School Governing Bodies over a six month period, the Vision for the Franschhoek schools has been formalised as:
“We are a partnership of interdependent schools promoting lifelong learning and wellness which will improve the quality of life of all people in our community.”
The agreed Mission for the schools is:
“We will create sustainable opportunities for all children, families, and our community to achieve their potential through:
- Working in co-operation with Government departments and other organisations
- Working in partnership with one another, sharing resources, and learning from each other
- Creating a learning community
- Taking responsibility for our environment
- Addressing all five dimensions of human development and well-being, namely:
o Schools’ ethos, culture and values system
o Cognitive (academic).”
A number of high level Goals have been defined, based on the Vision and Mission, which include:
- Full enrolment of all 3 – 5 year olds in structured pre-school programmes two years prior to entering Gr 1
- 100% learner retention between Gr 1 and 12
- Quality teaching and learning at ECD centres and schools
- Development of learners which addresses all five dimensions, being physical, emotional, social, schools’ ethos culture and values, and cognitive
- Involved, participating and contributing parents
- Motivated learners
- A safe learning environment
- An efficient and supportive schools’ infrastructure
- Learners’ career success
- A learning community
- A sustainable FSTP.
- CURRENT STATUS OF EDUCATION IN FRANSCHHOEK
This section provides a description of the current status of education in the Franschhoek Valley. It highlights many of the positive educational practices that are occurring as well as the challenges that both teachers and learners face.
5.1 SOUTH AFRICAN EDUCATIONAL CONTEXT
Throughout South African history, and particularly during the Apartheid years, the privileged few have had, and still have, access to infinitely more educational opportunities than the majority. Moreover, in the 19 years since 1994 there have been five Ministers of Education, five new curriculums have been introduced, and then changed and countless text books have been provided and then replaced.
Throughout this process of curriculum change, teachers have been required to attend training courses in one curriculum and then in another. This situation continues today with training in the use of the Curriculum Assessment Policy Statements (CAPS), which is already behind schedule. Consequently, many of the teachers in the Franschhoek schools are expected to implement this curriculum without sufficient training. Apartheid was not only characterised by segregation in schools, but also, most crucially, by segregation in the training of teachers. Different groups of teachers experienced training that was different in terms of its resourcing, its quality and its ideological thrust. This legacy and its effect on the quality of teaching and learning will remain present for many years to come.
Inequality in the provision of education is further exacerbated by the allowance made for the charging of fees in public schools serving the middle class. By developing countries’ standards, the size of South Africa’s independent school sector is small. Instead, social inequities are reflected within the public schools system as well as between the public and independent schools systems. Public schools in South Africa are divided into one of five socio-economic quintiles, depending on the degree of poverty existing in the community surrounding the school. Quintile 1 is the poorest of the five quintiles. Of the historically white schools 70% are in Quintile 5 and it is predominantly these schools that have fee structures that are, in some cases, equivalent to the top independent schools in the country thereby excluding the majority of lower income families.
The inequality mentioned above with regard to the Quintile rating system is evident in the Franschhoek Valley where there is one Independent school (Bridge House), one Quintile 4 school (Franschhoek) and the remaining schools all in the Quintile 1 poverty indicator. Consequently, most of the children in the Franschhoek Valley, particularly those attending the Quintile 1 schools, are plagued by the following societal problems and home environments that make learning difficult: poverty, poor nutrition, inadequate housing, parental absence and indifference, parental illiteracy, limited parental participation or interest in schooling, substance abuse, absence of positive role models, negative peer pressure, gangs, violence and crime.
Despite efforts on the part of the Department of Basic Education since 1994, there has been little or no improvement in the education of most South African children and some prominent experts in education are quoted as saying that it has deteriorated. The evidence of breakdown in schooling points to system and macro management failure, including failure at the District and Circuit level, rather than the failure of individual schools.
5.2 SUMMMARY OF CURRENT STATUS IN SCHOOLS
There is much to be optimistic about with regard to the schools in the Valley. Currently, there are total of 4 419 learners enrolled in the schools. In 2012, 162 Grade 12 learners successfully completed their National Senior Certificate examination, 80 with a Bachelor pass, 67 with a Diploma pass and 15 with a Senior Certificate qualification. The attainment of a Bachelor pass means the learner is eligible to apply for University, a Diploma pass equips the learner to apply for some University courses as well as access a University of Technology and a Senior Certificate pass allows the learner to progress to an FET College where he/she can attain a NQF level qualification and eventually progress to University. That a number of learners in the Valley exit the school system able to access Higher Education is encouraging.
The teachers are well qualified and in all of the schools there is evidence of excellent teaching. The curriculum offered in all of the schools is balanced and follows the CAPS statements.
In all of the schools, particularly the primary schools, the learners are neat and tidy. Many of the learners are evidently eager to attend school. Discipline is, on the whole, good and most of the schools have sound structures in place to deal with learner behaviour.
All of the schools have adequate buildings with basic facilities.
The Principals have a good working relationship with their SGBs and are well supported.
Notwithstanding the many positive aspects mentioned above there is room for improvement.
5.3 FOCUS AREAS IN SCHOOLS
This section highlights those areas where there is potential for growth and change. It is presented in alphabetic order by Focus Areas, being a specific aspect of a school such as Buildings and Facilities or Class Sizes which, in varying degrees, impact on the five dimensions of development identified in the Mission Statement:
- Schools’ ethos, culture and values system
- Cognitive (academic)
For each Focus Area, a medium term objective, or target profile, for Franschhoek schools is provided. These targets are inclusive of WCED objectives and have been reconciled with the School Improvement Plans (SIPs) developed by each school.
|5.3 FOCUS AREAS||TARGET PROFILE IN THE MEDIUM TERM|
|5.3.1 Appearance of School and Learners|
|Despite many of the children’s challenging home backgrounds, in all the schools most of the learners wear full school uniforms and are neat and tidy about their appearance, although this deteriorates noticeably from Grade 5 upwards.All of the schools appear clean.||Every school has the following:
|5.3.2 Buildings and Facilities|
|The legacy of inequality with respect to many years of unequal capital expenditure on school buildings is evident amongst the Franschhoek schools. The buildings in all the schools have basic facilities such as water, electricity and telephones. However, many schools do not have acceptable buildings and facilities to support quality teaching and learning. The following summary highlights the shortcomings in this regard in the Quintile 1 schools:
Bridge House is an exception to the above.
Franschhoek fares better than the Quintile 1 schools and has a science and computer laboratory, library, school hall and various other specialist classrooms. The grounds are spacious and there are 3 sports fields, 5 tennis and netball courts and the learners have access to a swimming pool.
|In every school:
|5.3.3 Class Sizes|
|Apart from two Quintile 1 primary schools, the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) allocation of teachers is sufficient to ensure that class sizes do not exceed the published maximum limit of 39 children. However, in many of the schools this results in classes of over 32, which is particularly problematic in the lower Grades.In all of the State schools there are teachers who are appointed and paid by the SGB. The SGB salaries are directly dependent on the ability of the parent body to contribute funds to pay these teachers. Consequently, in the Quintile 1 schools these SGB appointed teachers are paid less than those who are employed by the WCED, which causes resentment on their part. However, even with the addition of SGB appointed teachers class sizes in some of the schools are not always conducive to quality learning and teaching. The summary below highlights those Grades where the number of learners exceeds the WCED recommended maximum ceiling of 39.12 classes exceed the WCED recommended maximum ceiling of 39:
||In all the schools there is a:
|5.3.4 Classrooms and Equipment|
|In many of the schools the classrooms are overcrowded with unsuitable, over-large desks which make the learners uncomfortable leading to disengagement, irritation and misbehaviour on their part. The crowding also causes some teachers to resort to drilling and lecture style teaching as there is no space for group work and active learner engagement. In many instances the teacher is not able move past the front row of desks to give personal attention to all of the learners.Any increase in learner enrolment in the future will negatively impact on classroom space and availability in most of the schools. Furthermore, at some of the schools there is not sufficient classroom space to accommodate splitting some of the larger class groups into two.In most of the primary schools there is insufficient equipment for the development of fine motor skills in the lower Grade classrooms. All of the primary schools, except Bridge House, lack appropriate reading material. In the secondary schools there is a lack of resource or references books, dictionaries and so forth, particularly in those schools that do not have a library. In many schools there is a shortage of textbooks.In most schools there is a distinct lack of modern teaching equipment. Use of educational displays, posters or other teaching materials to stimulate the learners and augment what is taught is not consistent across Grades in the schools or across schools.Most classrooms lack satisfactory storage space, which adds to the problem of overcrowding.||In all the schools:
|5.3.5 Corporal Punishment|
|In some of the schools corporal punishment is used, despite it being against the law.||
|In most of the schools discipline and levels of learner cooperation are satisfactory and there are good structures in place to manage learners. All of the schools have discipline policies. However, in some schools there are discipline issues and a general lack of respect for staff members and rules. In the overcrowded classrooms discipline tends to be worse.Bullying occurs at some of the schools.||All the schools have:
|Very few of the schools offer on-campus alternative entertainment options for the learners in the evenings or over weekends such as movies, talks, workshops or dances. Neither is the community actively encouraged to hold family events on the school premises.||All the schools:
|5.3.8 Environmental Awareness|
|Only two schools have green spaces or vegetable gardens.||All the schools:
|5.3.9 Excursions, Educational Visits and Camps|
|The extent and variety of excursions, educational visits or camps provided by the schools differs. The Quintile 1 schools are disadvantaged as transport cost puts many excursions beyond their means. In one of the Quintile 1 schools the learners do not go on excursions. Bridge House and Franschhoek, which have school buses, are able to take their learners on a variety of educational outings.||In every school:
|5.3.10 Extra Mural Activities and Sport|
|Provision of extra mural activities varies. At those schools where there is an excellent extra mural and sports programme the learners engage actively in after school cultural or sporting activities. The reality is that in many of the schools the shortage of facilities, equipment and teachers willing to spend time after hours means that the provision of extra mural and sporting activities is limited. With few choices or options available to learners there is a resultant lack of participation or interest in after school activities, which means that a lot of the children spend unproductive time at home or on the streets.||All the schools:
|5.3.11 Food Provision|
|In the Quintile 1 schools food is available, once a day, to all the learners. However, many children are reported as coming to school hungry and in some instances the quality of food provided at the school could be improved. Both Bridge House and Franschhoek offer boarding facilities which cater for meals for the boarders.||All the schools:
|Very few learners wear spectacles despite the recognised national average of 15% – 20% of children who need them. A few teachers mention the possibility of hearing impairment in some learners.||All the schools:
|Homework in the Quintile 1 schools is a problem because many of the parents are illiterate and unable to provide any supervision. In addition, many of the home circumstances are not conducive to studying.||In every school:
|5.3.14 Information and Communication Technology (ICT)|
|The current status of ICT in Franschhoek schools is as follows:
||In all the schools:
o e-Teaching: teachers empowered to use technology effectively
o e-Learning: learners empowered to use technology effectively
o curriculum/education: models, methodologies and pedagogies responsive to education needs
o environment: a technology-enriched environment to enable effective e-Learning
o e- Administration: reliable ICT to streamline administration
|5.3.15 Independent Operation|
|Although all of the schools adhere to the National Curriculum Statements there is limited interaction between the schools in the Valley. Opportunities such as cross-school curriculum planning or sharing of resources, professional teacher development and sporting or cultural interaction between the learners do not often occur. The schools tend to operate very much as independent entities rather than as a cluster of schools with a shared vision for the future of all the children in the Valley.||All the schools:
Create virtual educational resource centres at individual schools such as a computer laboratory or teacher resource library, which are available for use by all learners, parents and the community. Alternatively, replace this with an Educational Resource Centre which has the following:
|English is the predominant language of the textbooks used in classrooms, as well as in the system’s policy documents. As a result, many of the learners in the Franschhoek schools, in particular, the isiXhosa first language speakers, are at a distinct disadvantage.In the primary schools most learners have the school’s medium of instruction as mother tongue but all the schools have some learners who have a different mother tongue and in many cases this is not even the school’s First Additional Language (FAL).Although most of the isiXhosa speakers go to Dalubuhle Primary school, when the school is full these learners are forced to attend the other primary schools where they struggle with the Afrikaans medium of instruction particularly in the Foundation Phase.At the secondary school level the language issue is complex:
||In all the schools:
|5.3.17 Learner Absenteeism, Retention and Enrolment|
|Learner absenteeism is less of a problem in the primary schools than the secondary schools and there is clear evidence that there is significantly more absenteeism from Grade 5 onwards. Absenteeism increases in the winter.With the exception of Bridge House, secondary schools experience retention problems in the FET Phase, particularly in Grades 11 and 12. Interestingly, at one school the dropout rate is greater in the Afrikaans medium classes than amongst the English medium, usually isiXhosa, classes. Reasons given for secondary school dropout are: joblessness in the community, disillusionment, community conditions, the need to work and supplement the family income, poor examples of adults and old boys/girls from the school.The chart below presents enrolment figures at Franschhoek schools in 2013:The enrolment figures for 2013 suggest the following:
||Throughout the Franschhoek Valley:
|5.3.18 Learning Community|
|One of the secondary schools opens its facilities for the use of evening adult education classes. However, on the whole, there is little opportunity for any form of lifelong learning, such as entrepreneurial skills training, through the schools for either the learners or community members.||All the schools:
|5.3.19 Life Orientation, Career Guidance and Life Skills|
|The Life Orientation CAPS statement caters for both career guidance and life skills training and is a compulsory NSC subject. However, in many of the schools the Life Orientation teacher is expected to teach the curriculum simply because he/she has more gaps in the timetable. This means that the content may be beyond their expertise and there may be little passion for the subject. As a result, the positive impact that the Life Orientation curriculum can have on the lives of the children is lost.||All the schools:
|5.3.20 Mathematics and Language|
|As a result of the challenges faced at the ECD level many children struggle with Mathematics and Language acquisition throughout their years at school.Schooling is divided into the following Phases:Primary Schools:
The pass requirement of the Litnums is 50%. The WCED average falls below this requirement for all Grades in both Mathematics and Language in all but one instance. This indicates that the majority of schools in the Western Cape, and not only those in the Franschhoek Valley, perform below standard.
Western Cape Systemic Test in Literacy and Numeracy (Litnums) Grade 3, 6 and 9
carrying their deficits in Mathematical and Language competency from one Grade to the next and there are not successful strategic teaching interventions in place to improve the situation.
The acquisition of Mathematics and Language skills in the Foundation and Intersen Phases in primary school is critical and, as shown above, there are some challenges in this regard. All of the teachers in the Quintile 1 schools express a need for more training in the teaching of mathematics and for access to appropriate teaching material, such as maths apparatus. In most schools the class sizes make it very difficult for teachers to differentiate meaningfully or to provide the extra help needed by the many learners who are unable to access beginning reading or to understand the essential concepts of early mathematics. Many children in the Valley do not attend a pre-primary programme and, consequently, have not developed the expected skills required to begin the Grade R or Grade 1 curriculum. Accordingly, they are at a disadvantage from the beginning.
Undoubtedly, the biggest challenge for both the primary and secondary schools is to overcome the learning deficits that the children carry with them from Phase to Phase. The problem is compounded by the ruling that a child may only fail one year in each Phase. This means that many children are promoted to the next year without the required competencies or basic skills in Mathematics or Language. Given the impoverished background of the majority of leaners in the Franschhoek schools, this means that they never catch up. In many instances, children reach secondary school unable to read properly with full comprehension for themselves or for communicating effectively with others, their writing is poor and their numerical skills irretrievably underdeveloped.
|All the schools:
|5.3.21 National Senior Certificate|
As mentioned above, these results are encouraging with a number of learners eligible to access Higher Education at the completion of their schooling. However, there are many learners who are not succeeding. The Department of Basic Education goals with regard to the NSC is that there needs to be an overall increase in pass rate and in the quality of passes, particularly an increase in Bachelor passes.
|In all the schools:
|5.3.22 Parental Involvement|
|Parental participation in the Quintile 1 schools is limited. This is in part owing to the levels of literacy amongst the parents themselves. They are often not able to monitor academic progress or assist their children with homework. In an environment where opportunities for work are scarce, there is little incentive on the part of the parents to encourage academic achievement and there are, consequently, few educational resources in the homes. All the Principals in the State schools report that parent meetings are not well attended and it is difficult to engender enthusiasm or interest in their parent bodies.Parental involvement at Bridge House is good, with most of the parents displaying a keen interest in their child’s educational, sporting and cultural achievements. The majority of these children come from homes where education is a priority and there are rich educational resources in the homes.||All the schools:
|There appear to be few opportunities for learners to develop self-pride or pride in their schools.||
|Principals often have to work with inexperienced School Governing Bodies (SGBs). They are exposed by poor national and systemic test results which are often not so much their fault but caused by the circumstances of the poor communities they serve. Some Principals mention that they are exhausted and simply looking forward to retirement. In one school there is no Deputy Principal which places too high a burden on the Principal. Most of the Principals have been in their positions for a considerable number of years, some having been deputies in the same school.Opportunities for professional and personal development for Principals are limited.||There is a close relationship between all the Principals in the Valley and a Principal Forum which meets regularly. All the Principals are:
|5.3.25 Professional Support Staff, Specialist Teachers and Classroom Assistants|
|Professional support staff: Professional support staff such as remedial teachers, occupational therapists, social workers and psychologists are not readily available.Librarian: Although the WCED recognises that all schools should have a library and provides a limited range of books, there is no provision for librarians. Schools are expected to allocate this to teachers as an extra mural activity. This means that the libraries are used without adequate trained supervision or the libraries are locked and barely used. Currently, the Franschhoek Literary Festival School Library Project is working in all of the Quintile 1 Primary Schools for one day a week. In one school the library is not yet open and the focus is on getting it stocked and organised, and in the other building operations has meant that there is no designated space for a library at this stage. The Kusasa Project pays for a library assistant in two of the schools.IT specialist: All the schools with the exception of two primary schools have a staff member in charge of ICT. However, in most of the schools this does not necessarily mean that the staff member in charge has expert ICT knowledge.None of the schools has dedicated teachers for music, drama, dance or sport. Staff members are expected to perform these roles themselves as extra mural activities or incorporate these into the curriculum content of their daily teaching.None of the primary schools have assistant teachers in the lower grades. Neither do they have laboratory assistants.At most, the schools have general administrative assistants and a caretaker.
Bridge House is the exception to the above and has access to professional staff, specialist subject teachers and expert administrators such as a bursar and marketing manager.
|All the schools have:
|5.3.26 Psycho Social Support for Learners|
|There is very limited opportunity for children to receive individual counselling in most of the schools.||
|5.3.27 Role in the Community|
|There are not many community events at the schools other than a few annual events at one or two. The schools cannot be described as being at the centre of the community.||
|5.3.28 School Governing Bodies|
|Some of the SGB Chairs are inexperienced and struggle with their role. The WCED does provide training for the SGBs but more is needed. Given the general parental apathy in attending school meetings, several SGB elections have to be repeated owing to a lack of quorum. This can lead to problems such as an unrepresentative SGB or one which favours small group interests. An added complication is that sufficient parents with the expertise needed on SGBs are not to be found in most of the school communities, which throws a disproportionate administrative load on the Principals and staff representatives. In particular, SGBs lack members with financial competence.||
|5.3.29 Security and Safety|
|Of concern is the broken perimeter fencing at one of the schools, which encourages undesirables to enter and harass the learners and deal in drugs.||All the schools:
|5.3.30 Special Needs|
|There is a noticeable lack of provision for learners with special needs and/or other barriers to learning amongst all of the schools, with the exception of Bridge House. Some schools have identified such learners but the availability of trained staff to deal with them in the schools is largely non-existent and there are not sufficient professional outside agencies to refer them to. This has a negative effect on all the children. Although the Education Department has a policy of inclusive education, many of the teachers are not trained to identify or recognise the special needs of individual children let alone manage them in an inclusive learning environment.||All the schools:
|5.3.31 Subject Choice|
|Subject choice occurs at the end of Grade 9. In all of the schools there are children who do not take Mathematics as a subject. However, in two of the schools, the number of learners who choose not to take Mathematics and instead take Mathematical Literacy is concerning. A choice of Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy is compulsory for a NSC qualification. In one school an average of 50% of learners in Grade 10, 11 and 12 take Mathematics. In the second school 34% of Grade 10 learners, 8% of Grade 11 learners and 3% of Grade 12 learners take Mathematics. Learners are not able to cope with the demands of the Physical Science curriculum without competency in Mathematics and, consequently, there is little incentive for many of the learners in the above schools to take Physical Science. This precludes them from many of the courses offered at Higher Education level, both at University and Further Education and Training Colleges, and hampers their chances of future gainful employment.Both the National Development Plan and Action Plan 2014 – Towards the Realisation of Schooling 2025 – have as a priority goal the need to increase the number of Grade 12 learners who achieve a quality pass in Mathematics and Physical Science.||In every school:
|Given the historical context of change over the past 19 years with little improvement in the system, many teachers suffer from low morale. There is limited sharing by teachers of concepts and concerns about their work either within the school or together with teachers from other schools. Several Principals mention the unwillingness of a number of long-standing staff to change, embrace the new curriculums or learn new skills.In most schools there are few opportunities for teacher development on either a professional or personal level.With the exception of one teacher who is studying to get a recognised South African Council of Educators (SACE) teaching qualification, all the teachers at all the schools are sufficiently well-qualified, some with excellent qualifications.||In all schools the teachers:
|5.3.33 Teacher Absenteeism|
|Statistical data from the WCED is unavailable.||
|5.3.34 Teaching Methodologies|
|Although there is evidence of outstanding teaching in all of the schools, to a large extent teachers have few variations in their teaching. Specifically, lessons lack pace, teachers talk too much and there is limited opportunity for learners to participate meaningfully. This is sometimes less the fault of the teacher and more the fact that classes are too big and classrooms are overcrowded. The lack of teaching aids available to the teachers and resources for the learners adds to the problem. In all the schools, other than Bridge House, access to IT to enhance teaching and learning is limited. Many of the teachers mention that they would use interactive white boards if these were available.||In all schools:
|5.3.35 Time on Task|
|All the schools have to comply with the regulation minimum of 7 hours of teaching and learning contact time per day, as stipulated in the South African Schools Act.Research has shown that an increase in teacher learner contact time has a profound benefit for learners and, in schools that fall into the Quintile 1 range, this is even more important as the school can provide a safe environment to engage the children in meaningful activities during the afternoons. In some of the schools it appears that staff members leave school as soon as the final class is completed. Many of the teachers and Principals do not live in Franschhoek. This has an effect on the time they are prepared to give to extra-murals, and on becoming part of their school communities beyond their campuses. In addition, some teachers have an extra job, which impacts on their availability for the learners.||
|Transport in the Franschhoek Valley is a problem. The WCED provides transport in the form of busses for children who live more than 5 kilometres away from a school. In the Franschhoek Valley it is presumed that most of the children are within this range. This is not the reality and many of the children, some as young as 6 years, are forced to walk up to 5 kilometres to school. In winter this is problematic for many reasons. Most lack of punctuality in the schools can be attributed to transport problems. Furthermore, there is no transport for children to attend sport or cultural extra mural activities away from the school. This also impacts on the ability for schools to organise outings for the learners.||
5.4 CHANGE READINESS
The FSTP Vision and Mission contemplate significant changes to the modus operandi of the seven schools within the project scope. The ability of the schools to bring about this level of change expeditiously is a function of their personnel’s readiness for change, their enthusiasm to support the new vision and the project team’s efforts to plan specific interventions to increase the acceptance of change, increase the speed with which change can be implemented and stabilise the changed environment.
This section describes a high-level assessment of the change readiness of the schools together with typical change management techniques which may be employed for this purpose.
5.4.1 Schools’ disposition towards change
Education’s collegial environments demand the fullest buy-in of those affected by the change for change to be successful.
In addition, over the last nineteen years in South Africa, education has been the laboratory for ill-conceived experiments, with changes having been over-hastily implemented, with an over-emphasis on content and with scant attention paid to preparing teachers for change.
At the individual teacher level, there are a number of factors which contribute to their change readiness, including:
- Locus of control, whereby individuals may have externalised issues (such as the issue being attributable to WCED) rather than valuing their own ability to take ownership of the issue and drive the change themselves.
- Lack of trust among staff members, which mitigates against the sense of teamwork which can be crucial in implementing change.
- Diverse attitudes ranging from dedicated and committed professionals to others who are less so, which will affect the speed and success of change.
- The presence of visionary leadership, which is a major contributor to change management. Starting with the principals, and mirrored in the SGB’s, School Management Teams (SMT’s) and Internal Transformation Teams (ITT’s), the communication of consistent and motivating messages has a significant impact on those confronted by change.
In summary, across the seven schools within the FSTP scope, there are different levels of change readiness at the school level and at the individual level. Having said that, it was clear during a series of workshops held with four of the schools that there was openness to new ideas from by far the majority of staff members, which augurs well.
5.4.2 Change Management techniques which will be considered
Change Management is the term used to identify the systematic approach to design and implement the change aspects of major programmes. Such programmes employ a variety of techniques depending on the nature of the change being implemented. These include:
- Change readiness assessments, which include the identification of specific barriers which may exist and which require to be dealt with to allow the change programme to proceed
- Teambuilding and working
- Communication programmes among those initiating change and those affected by it
- Individual mentoring to assist people in coming to terms with change
- Training in all aspects of how the new environment is planned to function
- Involvement in the design of new processes to ensure that the “people” aspects are adequately considered and included.
Within the context of FSTP specifically, the change process began more than one year ago with the regular meeting of principals to agree the Vision, Mission and other aspects of the project. This approach of working together across school boundaries towards a common, valley-wide objective must be extended to other levels in order to further enable the vision.
The following approaches will be carefully considered during the FSTP design and implementation phases:
- Establishing cross-school forums
- Publishing a cross-school newsletter
- Embedding FSTP responsibilities within the existing school structures, particularly in SGB’s and SMT’s to make them a permanent part of school management
- Teambuilding across schools by phase/subject.
- CURRENT STATUS OF EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT CENTRES IN FRANSCHHOEK
A survey of nineteen private Early Childhood Centres (ECDs) in the Franschhoek Valley that are not attached to either a registered Independent or State school, was undertaken with the following objectives:
- To assess the quality of teaching and learning at a high level
- To evaluate the teaching resources, equipment, facilities and infrastructure
- To ascertain how many children are currently enrolled in ECD centres
- To ascertain how many children entering Grade 1 in 2013 have not been in a Grade R programme
- To estimate how many children of eligible age are not enrolled in a crèche, pre-school or Grade R
- To estimate the scale of future demand for pre-school and Grade R.
ECD is defined as all education that precedes Grade 1.
Although there can be variations, the generally accepted age division for ECD is as follows:
|Crèche||0 – 3 years|
|Pre-school year 1||3 years turning 4|
|Pre-school year 2||4 years turning 5|
|Grade R||5 years turning 6|
There is no formal name for the two years of pre-school although some schools refer to the 4 years turning 5 age group (pre-school year 2) as Grade RR or Grade 0. Pre-primary is also often used interchangeably with pre-school. The term pre-school is used to refer to these age groups throughout this report.
Studies from around the world, including South Africa, show that good ECD programmes make it easier for a child to learn at primary school level. This is evident in Franschhoek where all the primary school Principals report that there is a noticeable difference in learner academic achievement if they have attended an ECD centre, in particular, those that offer good quality structured teaching and learning programmes.
The National Development Plan has set the goal for South Africa that all children should receive 2 years of quality pre-schooling before Grade R by 2030. The Department of Basic Education medium-term strategic framework goal is that by 2014 all children should participate in Grade R. Moreover, the teaching and learning in Grade R must be of a sufficiently acceptable standard, so that the necessary preparation for Grade 1 can be realised. There are a number of key concerns in this regard. Namely, quality teaching and learning in Grade R is uneven across the system and weak in many schools. Not all schools in the country have a Grade R class. With respect to learning materials, many Grade R classes do not have any books or toys. Furthermore, class sizes are too big with the average class exceeding 40 learners. In general, the status given to Grade R teachers is not high and salaries tend to be lower than a Grade 1 teacher which makes it doubtful whether sufficiently qualified people are attracted to these posts. Indeed, there are currently large disparities between the qualifications of Grade R teachers. Approximately a quarter of Grade R teachers have a degree and a further one-third hold a diploma. 13% have qualifications at the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) Level 5 (equivalent of a school leaving certificate plus one year), and 12% have a qualification at NQF Level 4 (equivalent of a school leaving certificate). 38% of Grade R teachers do not have the equivalent of a school leaving qualification
The above is applicable to many of the private ECD centres in Franschhoek. Consequently, establishing universal enrolment in Grade R and quality pre-school programmes that address the developmental needs of children in the age group 3 – 5 years is a priority both for South Africa and for the Franschhoek Valley.
There is no standardised curriculum for the pre-school age groups below Grade R. Most of the private ECD centres in Franschhoek use the NELDS Social Development Department guidelines for development for age 3 to 5 as a basis for their teaching and learning. The Department of Basic Education provides a curriculum for Grade R and advises that a modified version of this curriculum can be used in the 2nd year of pre-school with the age group 4 years turning 5.
Each of the nineteen private ECD centres in Franschhoek has been broadly grouped into one of four categories based on associated criteria.
|Category of Private ECDs|
|Category||Number of ECDs||Total children||Criteria|
|1||5||159||Crèches and pre-schools that are not registered. With the exception of one pre-school, all the ECDs in this Category offer no teaching and learning. The one that does, offers very basic programmes.|
|2||2||46||Pre-schools that are registered and attempt to provide a structured teaching and learning programme. However, the lesson input is basic and significant assistance is needed to improve the curriculum delivery, resources, facilities and infrastructure of these centres.|
|3||8||257||Pre-schools that are registered. Some in this Category have children under the age of 3 years and some offer Grade R. A few of those that offer Grade R are not registered with the Dept. of Basic Education. These centres provide structured teaching and learning programmes. Most of the teachers working in these centres express a desire for assistance with teaching and learning. On the whole these centres are reasonably well equipped and have acceptable facilities and infrastructure, although some could be improved.|
|4||4||159||Pre-schools and Grade R that are registered. They offer excellent structured teaching and learning programmes, are well equipped and, in many instances, offer first-rate facilities and infrastructure.|
Of the 621 children catered for in private ECD centres in the Franschhoek Valley, 462 are in Category 1, 2 or 3. It is doubtful whether any of the centres in Category 1 or 2 meet the developmental needs of the children. Two centres in Category 1 are clearly in contravention of the Department of Social Development registration requirements. As described above, those in Category 3 all need assistance with curriculum development and some with resources, facilities and infrastructure. Only 159 children are in good quality private ECD centres.
The following table provides enrolment numbers for the 19 private ECD centres as well as pre-school year2, Grade R and 1 for the registered Independent and State schools for the purpose of estimating the number of children not in ECD centres and the scale of future demand for ECD provision in the Franschhoek Valley:
The number of learners at the 19 private ECDs fluctuates from month to month for the following reasons:
- Parents enrol their children well into January and often not until February of the school year
- Many parents enrol their child at an ECD at the beginning of the month and are not able, or willing, to pay the fees at the end of the month so move their child to another centre
- During the winter months (June – August) there is a drop in attendance at ECD centres as stable work opportunities on the wine farms decrease.
As a result of the above an analysis of enrolments was conducted at the end of January, mid-February and at the beginning of April. Although there was evidence of movement from one ECD centre to the next the numbers remained largely the same. Consequently, the data presented above is sufficiently reliable on which to base this report.
Although children are often held back at the end of Grade 1, which results in a peak in Grade 1 enrolment, for the purposes of this report it is assumed that each year a similar figure of 467 Grade 1 learners are enrolled in the Valley.
Working on the key assumption that the number of children in the valley in each age group should be more or less equal in number, the enrolment figures suggest the following:
- Currently just over 25% (111) of children enrolled in Grade 1 in 2013 have not been in a Grade R programme and, by extension, a pre-school programme
- Roughly 200 children in each of the age ranges 3 years turning 4 (pre-school year 1) and 4 years turning 5 (pre-school year 2) are not in an ECD centre. This implies that the scale of future demand for pre-school facilities against the State objective of having all children experience 2 years of pre-school before Grade R is approximately 200 for each of the two pre-school age groups
- More than 300 children in the age range 0 – 3 years are not in a crèche facility
- The difference between the number of registered Grade 1 learners and Grade R in 2013, including the 36 children who should be in Grade R but are not, suggests that more than 100 children in the age range 5 years turning 6 are currently not in a formal Grade R programme
- Of those children currently registered in Grade R, 330 are in classes attached to Independent or State primary schools and 71 are catered for in private Grade R centres. The capacity for Grade R classes at the State schools is going to have to increase in the future to accommodate, at the very least, another 100 learners, or alternatively there will need to be a growth in quality private Grade R provision.
6.1.4 Food provision
All of the private ECD centres provide food for the children although the nutritional value of these meals and the hygiene around food preparation varies significantly, with those in Category 1 and 2 faring the worst. In some centres the children receive two meals and a snack each day and in others one meal.
All ECD centres enrolling children below Grade R level are required to be registered with the Department of Social Development. Grade R is registered with the Department of Basic Education. Some of the Franschhoek ECDs are registered with the Department of Social Development but have not yet been able to register with the Department of Basic Education for Grade R provision.
6.1.6 Teacher qualifications
Although an in-depth analysis of teacher qualifications at the ECD level was not done, the South African statistics above seem to reflect the situation in the Franschhoek Valley. For example, in two of the centres in Category 1 and one centre in Category 2 the teachers have no qualification. The remaining Category 1 and Category 2 teachers have varying qualifications with none higher than a NQF Level 4. The Category 3 teacher qualifications vary with most at the NQF Level 5, and above, or currently studying to get this qualification. The Category 4 teachers are generally well-qualified with either a degree, diploma or NQF Level 5 qualification.
6.2 TARGET PROFILE OF ECD IN THE MEDIUM TERM
- All children in the Valley in the age range 3 – 6 are enrolled in a quality ECD centre
- There is sufficient capacity for ECD provision in the Valley
- There is an active and productive ECD Forum that meets monthly
- There is a standardised curriculum taught in all ECD centres
- All the private ECDs have a partnership with the Primary schools and regular meeting are held to discuss curriculum issues and ensure that all children entering Grade 1 are sufficiently school ready
- All private ECD centres are registered with the Department of Social Development and Basic Education if they offer Grade R
- All ECD teachers in the Valley are suitably qualified
- Nutritious food is provided for children registered in category 1 and 2 ECD centres in the Valley.
7. THE TEN HIGHEST PRIORITY PROJECTS
The 10 Priority Projects agreed on by the Steering Committee are the culmination of the following process:
Once the Vision and Mission of the FSTP had been established, the School Survey defined the current status of education in the seven schools and identified 36 Focus Areas needing improvement and development. Thereafter, Task Teams made up of the Steering Committee members, representatives from the schools’ Internal Transformation Teams, other teaching staff and School Governing Body Chairs agreed on priority Focus Areas. Medium Term Objectives for each priority Focus Area were established by each Task Team. These were then packaged into 21 potential Projects. All of the Projects are aligned with the Department of Basic Education short and long term goals, as well as the schools’ individual School Improvement Plans (SIPs). The 21 potential Projects were then prioritised into 10 Priority Projects that will be the initial focus of the FSTP work.
The 11 potential Projects not selected to form the initial 10 Priority Projects are as follows:
- Appearance of School and Learners
- Classrooms and Equipment
- Extra Mural Activities and Sport
- Learner Enrichment Project
- Learner Enrolment, Retention and Absenteeism
- Learning Community
- Psycho Social Support for Learners
- Security and Safety
The rationale for giving those Projects a secondary priority is that the 10 priority Projects, listed below, represent the basic building blocks which, once in place, will facilitate the implementation of the remaining projects. For example:
- It is envisaged that the Teacher Enrichment Project will develop dedicated and committed teachers who are willing to extend the school day to invest in the learners and provide a rich extra mural and sports programme to occupy the children after hours. It is likely that an enriched curriculum that engages the learners in meaningful activities will encourage learners to attend school and decrease the dropout rate
- The ability to run after school Extra Mural Activities and Homework will be possible once a transport system has been implemented
- The Food Provision Project will impact on learners’ overall health, which will, in turn, reduce absenteeism and improve retention rates as well as overall academic performance of the children
- One of the main challenges regarding language in all the schools is the variety of Home Languages spoken by the learners. The Teacher Enrichment Project will address this by providing training session for teachers on how to cope with different Home Languages in the classroom
- The ECD Project includes a strong emphasis on parental involvement and it is envisaged that if parents become invested in their child’s early education this interest and commitment will remain throughout their child’s school career. Furthermore, it is likely that this will impact on learner enrolment, retention and absenteeism at both at the ECD and school level
- The Special Needs Project will include psycho social support for the learners.
The Ten Priority Projects
The following section summarises the objectives of the ten priority projects.
- Early Childhood Development
Studies show that good quality ECD programmes make it easier for a child to learn at primary school level. Consequently, ECD is viewed as the starting point for educational success and an investment in ECD will have a significant effect on the future academic potential of all children in the Valley.
- Teacher Enrichment
Motivated, excellent teachers are the cornerstone of any successful education system. Therefore, a focus on developing a highly skilled professional body of teachers in the Valley through a teacher enrichment focus is essential.
- Principal Enrichment
The key to a successful school is strong leadership. A visionary leader sets the tone for all the role players in the school. Accordingly, on-going enrichment and development of Principals in the Valley will benefit all in the school community.
- Special Needs
Given their impoverished backgrounds, many of the learners in the Valley require specialised intervention in order to succeed at school. Therefore, special needs provision and assisting teachers to cope with the challenges of special needs learners in their classrooms is a central component of improving education in the Valley.
- Parental Involvement
Many of the learners’ home environments are not educationally supportive. Greater parental involvement and investment in their children’s education will have a widespread positive impact. For example, an understanding of the importance of education will impact on enrolment and absenteeism and the creation of home environments that are conducive to learning. In addition, the parents play a critical role in the form of School Governing Bodies. A major challenge in the Valley is parental apathy and lack of involvement in SGB elections. A parental involvement project will empower parents to become involved in SGB elections and membership and, in turn, encourage further parental engagement.
Many of the children in the Valley walk some distance to school and back each day. During the winter months this is particularly problematic and impacts on the children’s health, their punctuality and attendance at school. In addition, many of the children are unable to participate in after school activities as they have no transport home in the late afternoons. Neither are schools able to take learners on educational outings or camps. Therefore, a transport scheme will impact favourably on all learners.
- Education Resource Centre
An Educational Resource Centre has the potential to address many of the challenges faced by Principals, teachers, learners and parents in the Valley, as well as promoting sharing and collaboration. An alternative, and equally beneficial scenario, is to set up satellite centres of excellence in individual schools that focus on a particular area e.g. a state of the art library in one school for all stakeholders across the Valley to use.
- Food Provision
Many of the children in the Valley come from impoverished backgrounds. Providing a nutritious meal twice a day for the poorest learners at ECD level, as well as one meal a day for those learners who do not benefit from the WCED feeding scheme, is critical in improving their health and overall ability to learn and achieve well in all aspects of their schooling.
- Class Size
Given the number of children in the Valley who currently require special needs intervention, the teachers are not able to cope with class sizes that exceed 30 learners.
ICT will continue to evolve and paly an ever-increasing role in improving the quality of learning. It is mandatory that learners become increasingly exposed to current technology with improved connectivity.
The following section describes each of the ten priority projects as follows:
- Each project is comprised of one or more sub projects which represent logical and manageable sections of work with defined objectives
- Objectives are listed for each sub project in line with the medium term target profile previously presented.
- Each sub project will go through a design phase followed by an implementation phase. The work in each of these phases will differ depending on the sub project but could include the following for design:
o Resolving outstanding decisions
o Evaluating alternative offerings
o Negotiating with suppliers
o Confirming the estimated resources required for implementation
- The work to be undertaken during implementation may include:
o Physical installation of equipment
o Training of those who will be using it
o Embedding procedures in existing manuals
o Handover to operational personnel.
- The approach to each of design and implementation phases is outlined
- Estimated resources required for the design and implementation phases are presented. A distinction is made between
o Time of Bhabhathane and other people
o Once-off out of pocket expenses
o On-going out of pocket expenses (i.e. in the operational environment).
|7.1 Early Childhood Development|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.1.1 Full enrolment||* All children in the age range 3 – 6 years age enrolled in an ECD centre.* All children of ECD age receive access to quality education and become role models and advocates for the opportunities that education affords.* All children are school ready by the time they reach Grade 1.* Parent workshops well attended.* Parents actively involved and invested in their child’s early education.* The home environment of the children conducive to learning.||Design:* Establish how many 3 – 6 year old children live in the Franschhoek Valley.* Research whether there are any organisations that deal specifically with ECD enrolment and, if so, consult with them with regard to the best strategy for ensuring full enrolment.* Form partnerships with organisations that run programmes for parents on investing in their child’s education.* Investigate the feasibility of providing financial assistance for parents who are unable to afford ECD fees.Implementation:
* Run parental information sessions on the importance of ECD, and education in general, to encourage enrolment.
* Run parent workshops on financial management and monthly budgeting to pay school fees.
* Introduce programmes that encourage parental participation in their child’s early education. This includes parent training and upskilling in the use of educational materials to work with their children.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- coordinate parent workshops, advertise workshops, set up venues, cater and, if outsourced, host service provider running the workshops- meet with ECD Forum to plan parent meeting input.Time commitment from other participants:- parents- ECD Forum members
– other NGO collaboration.
Out of pocket expenses:
* As an example, the Brain Boosters programme which is designed to develop parental participation in their child’s early education. The full programme including training and materials for parents and children is R250 000 (per annum).
* Approximately 1 000 parents to attend a minimum of 1 meeting per school term. Each meeting to host approx. 300 parents. 3 ECD meetings per term and a total of 12 ECD parent meeting per annum at a cost of R5 000 per meeting for catering and copying of information. Total R60 000.
|7.1.2 Increase capacity and upgrade existing ECD centres||* All children of ECD age attend centres that have sound infrastructure and are clean, hygienic and well-equipped with basic necessities such as carpets, matrasses and educational materials.* There is sufficient capacity for ECD provision in the Valley.* Children’s health improves owing to better facilities.* Children enjoy the experience of ECD owing to warm, comfortable and enriching learning environments.||Design:* Full audit of ECD centres (particularly Category 1 & 2) to assess condition of infrastructure and assess whether their capacity can be increased.Implementation:Assist private ECDs and school Principals to source funding to:* Upgrade the ECD centres.* Extend capacity where possible with regard to existing ECD centres.
* Ensure capacity for future ECD enrolment.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- assist the ECD Principals and the School Principals to access funding to upgrade their infrastructure in order to accommodate more children.- advise ECD Principals on building plans and so forth.Out of pocket expenses:Once off:* Audit of Category 1 and 2 ECD centres to ascertain the work needed to accomplish the above R25 000.
The following capital expenditure will not be carried by Bhabhathane but Bhabhathane will, where possible, assist in sourcing financial assistance:
* The category 1 and many of the Category 2 centres need full refurbishment e.g. waterproofing, plumbing, building of kitchen and toilet facilities and the purchase of matrasses, carpets and educational resources etc.
* The 8 Category 3 private ECD centres need to increase capacity by developing their infrastructure to accommodate more children.
* The schools in the Valley will need to source either independent financial assistance or get the WCED to build additional classrooms at each of the 6 Primary Schools.
|7.1.3 Standardised curriculum||* All teachers use the same curriculum.*All children receive the same high quality educational input.* All children are school ready by the time they reach Grade 1.* Children enjoy the lesson content.* Teachers access a high quality curriculum and excellent educational resources so that children grow holistically through activities offered.||Design:* Establish a Curriculum Planning Committee to design a curriculum that can be used across the Valley.* Consult with other NGOs or practitioners in the ECD arena to source best practice and quality curriculum content and material.* Facilitate meetings with ECD and primary school Principals to standardise the Grade R curriculum.Implementation:* Implement a standardised curriculum in all ECD centres.
* Conduct school readiness assessments.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- coordinate input from the Curriculum Planning Committee- organise and print material- consult with other NGOs and curriculum experts- facilitate meetings with ECD and primary school Principals.Time commitment from other participants:
– ECD teacher commitment to curriculum planning sessions
– Primary school Principals/ HOD of Foundation Phase commitment to planning Grade R curriculum.
Out of pocket expenses:
* Estimated cost of R15 000 per 19 ECD centres for materials per annum. Total R285 000.
|7.1.4 ECD Forum and partnership with Primary Schools||* All ECD practitioners participate in the Forum.* The Forum offers support to all ECD teachers.* The collaboration efforts of the Forum and the Primary Schools results in top quality teaching and learning.* There is on-going collaboration with the Primary Schools with regard to curriculum input and the requirements for school readiness.* The progress of each child is tracked from ECD through to the Foundation Phase so that appropriate interventions are in place to cater for learning difficulties and/or identify high achievers.||Design:* Build relationship and consult with current ECD Forum that exists in the Valley.* Build relationship between ECDs and schools and consult with Primary School Principals and Foundation Phase staff.Implementation:* Establish an ECD Forum with all practitioners in the Valley.* Facilitate links with the Principals of the Primary Schools and the Foundation Phase teachers.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- assist in building on the capacity of the current ECD Forum that exists in the Valley by facilitating relationships and inviting others to join- assist the Forum Chair to set up meeting, send invitations, plan meeting content, record meetings and so forth- facilitate partnership with Primary Schools.Time commitment from other participants:- Primary School Principals, HODs of Foundation Phase and ECD practitioners (see above for curriculum planning).
Out of pocket expenses:
* Cost of printing for meetings approximately R100 per meeting x 12. Total R1 200.
* Catering for monthly meetings of approximately 40 people at a cost of R500 per meeting. Total R6 000.
|7.1.5 Registration||* All ECD centres fully registered and comply with regulations for safety, health etc. with the Department of Social Development and Basic Education if offering Grade R.* Children’s health improves owing to hygienic facilities and protection from the cold in winter.* Children enjoy their time at the centre as a result of adequate facilities.||Design:* Research requirements for registration with the Department of Social Development and the Department of Basic Education.* Complete audit of areas that need improvement and or development in order to comply with registration requirements (as per 8.1.2 above).Implementation:* Assist practitioners to access, complete and submit applications for registration.||Bhabhathane time to:- assist ECD practitioners to access, complete and submit applications for registration and to ensure that centres are compliant with registration requirements. (Audit of ECD centres as per sub section 8.1.2. above).Time commitment from other participants:- Principals of ECD centres to complete and submit applications.|
|7.1.6 Teacher qualifications and training||* All teachers well qualified with a minimum of a NQF Level 5 qualification.* Children receive quality educational input.* Lesson content of a high standard.* Teachers confident in their ability.||Design:* Conduct an analysis of ECD practitioner qualifications.* Investigation of courses offered and service providers e.g. teacher training colleges.* Research opportunities for support from the SETAs.* Research training opportunities e.g. ORT CAPE (SA) in-service training to NQF Level 5, Department of Social Development training courses for NQF Level 4 at no cost.Implementation:
* Register teachers in appropriate training programmes.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- analyse levels of current ECD teacher qualifications- investigate study options- assist in sourcing funding for further training- investigate registration with the SETAs- explore in-service training provided by other NGOs or State Departments.
Time commitment from other participants:
– ECD teachers to commit to and attend courses
– other NGOs providing in-service training.
|7.1.7 Food provision||* The approx. 200 children in the category 1 and 2 ECD centres receive 2 nutritional meals a day.* Parental involvement in feeding scheme where they assist with food preparation for a stipend.* Children’s health improves.||Design:* Investigate opportunities to outsource food provision or collaborate with organisations that are already involved in food provision.* Research menu options.Implementation:* Implement feeding scheme at all ECD centres.||* Bhabhathane time to:- investigate collaborative or outsourcing opportunities for food provision.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:* Payment of a small stipend to parents involved in assisting with food preparation at the 7 category 1 and 2 ECD centres. 2 parents at each of the 7 ECD centres paid R250 each per month over 10 months of the school year. Total R35 000 per annum.* Approx. 200 children at a cost of R25 per day per child over 200 days of the school year. Total per annum R1 000 000.|
|7.2 Teacher Enrichment|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.2.1 Cross school network throughout the Valley (at Grade, Phase and Subject level)||* Cross school teacher meetings and classrooms observation sessions are regularly held at the Grade, Phase and Subject level.* All teachers benefit from collaboration, joint lesson planning and sharing of resources.* Teachers able to experience model lessons and excellent pedagogical practice through cross school observation.* Whole school development and improvement through the implementation of a Valley wide School Peer Review.* Develop Valley wide school policies e.g. Code of Conduct to assist with discipline, attendance and so forth.* Learners’ benefit from improved lesson input and content.
* Teachers feel supported by their peers.
* Increase in attendance by the learners as lesson content is more interesting. Pride in their school.
* Decrease in learner drop-out rate.
|Design:* Establish relationships between the Principals, HODs and teachers of the schools (by Phase).* Consult with all stakeholders regarding priority areas for collaboration.Implementation:* Set up cross school meetings.* Organise opportunities for teachers to observe lessons at the different schools to show case best practice.
* Oversee the development and implementation of a Valley wide School Peer Review.
* Oversee the development of Valley wide school policies.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- organise cross school lesson observation- organise cross school Phase meetings for curriculum collaboration and sharing of resources- set up systems for feedback procedures, central repository to monitor review process.Time commitment from other participants:- Teachers’ time after school. (Initially Bhabhathane driven but goal is for meetings to be school driven with HODs and teachers initiating meetings, planning content of meetings and so forth)
– Task Team made up of representatives from each school to develop the School Peer Review and school policies.
|7.2.2 Teacher training Examples of subjects are:- Discipline methods- Barriers to Learning/Special needs- Coping with different languages in the classroom- Assessment methods
– ICT training
|* Teachers regularly attend training sessions which have a positive impact on their teaching practice.* Teachers adopt progressive and constructive discipline methods, engage in positive reinforcement and find alternatives to corporal punishment.* Teachers are supported in coping with specific disruptions to learning caused by crime, substance abuse and so forth.* Teachers able to identify barriers to learning or special needs of their learners and are supported in coping with these in the classroom.* Teachers given strategies to cope with different home languages in the classroom.* Teachers given training sessions in assessment methodologies, differentiated learning, learner centred approaches to teaching and learning, how to design and implement effective tracking systems for learners, action plans to assist weaker learners, support in CAPS and training for Life Orientation teachers in career guidance and subject choice for learners.
* Teachers incorporate a variety of methodologies in their teaching.
* Teachers embrace technology and integrate ICT in their lessons.
* Teachers experience greater job satisfaction owing to improved learner behaviour and attitude.
* Increase in teacher morale and confidence.
* Lower staff turnover.
* Teachers are committed to the upliftment of education in the whole Valley.
* Teachers are present and committed to the schools’ stakeholders.
* Learners benefit from all of the above e.g. improved results, greater participation in lessons.
* Learners with special needs identified and beneficial interventions put into place.
* Positive reinforcement as opposed to a punitive discipline system raises learners’ self-esteem and confidence.
* Learners feel recognised and acknowledged.
|Design:* Conduct survey of change readiness amongst staff in the schools.* Consult with all stakeholders as to priority areas for training and development.* Research organisations or individuals who are experts in school discipline, disruptions to learning, training in special needs/barriers to learning, coping with different Home Languages in the classroom, assessment methods, ICT training and so forth.Implementation:* Organise training sessions for each of the specific areas identified e.g. discipline, special needs etc.
* Monitor results of training sessions.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- identify, source, select and acquire appropriate expert individuals or organisations to assist with training sessions- schedule meetings, arrange venues, copy materials and provide catering.Time commitment from other participants:– Teachers’ time to attend training sessions. 10 training sessions per teacher per annum- Experts’ or other organisations’ time to run training sessions.
Out of pocket expenses:
* Approximately R5 000 per training session if outsourced. It is envisaged that the staff at each school will attend a minimum of 10 training sessions per annum. These sessions will be run on a rotational basis at each of the 8 schools.
* 10 training sessions at each of the 8 schools per annum. 80 training sessions at R5 000 per session. Total R400 000 per annum.
|7.2.3 Personal development||* Teachers attend motivational talks that encourage excitement about the profession.* Teachers aspire to be worthwhile role models.* Teachers are profiled in the local press.* Functions are held that value the teaching profession such as a celebration of Teachers’ Day.* Teachers are valued by the learners, parents and the wider community.* Teacher morale improves and teachers’ perception of themselves and their profession is enhanced.
* Teachers are more likely energised, confident and enthusiastic resulting in improved teaching and learning.
|Design:* Research organisations or individuals who are able to run personal development workshops.* Conduct survey of change readiness amongst staff in the schools.* Consult with all teachers regarding priority areas for development e.g. relationship building, self-motivational workshops etc.Implementation:* Implement Teacher workshops||*Bhabhathane time to:- source experts or organisations that specialise in personal development workshops- arrange sessions, venues, times, catering- collect information on teachers, write up a profile and submit to the local press.- organise events/celebrations such as Teachers’ Day.Time commitment from other participants:
– Teachers’ time to attend workshops (over weekends)
– Other organisations or experts to run sessions.
Out of pocket expenses:
* 250 teachers to attend at least one personal development sessions per annum (divided into groups of 50 i.e. 5 groups). 5 groups to attend an overnight workshop.
* 250 teachers at an average cost of R550 per person for one overnight workshop per annum. Total R137 500.
*Transport for 5 groups of 50 teachers to attend an overnight retreat approx. R25 000 (R5 000 per bus).
|7.2.4 Learning community||* Teachers receive input in effective time management.* Teachers are willing to spend time over and above the requisite 7 hours at school to provide extra academic, extra mural or sporting opportunities for the learners.* Teachers understand the importance of providing a safe after school environment to engage learners in meaningful activities during the afternoons.* Teachers are willing to go the extra mile.* No teachers have extra jobs that impact on their commitment to the learners.* All learners benefit from the wider curriculum input and the investment and interest of their teachers in them.
* There is a noticeable increase in learner attendance and participation in after school activities.
* Learners are actively and meaningfully engaged in the afternoons, which may reduce potential miscreant behaviour such as experimentation with drugs or alcohol.
|Design:* Survey change readiness of staff in the schools.* Source experts who run workshops/sessions on time management.Implementation:* Introduce change interventions through change management sessions.||*Bhabhathane time to:- source experts or organisations that specialise in time management- arrange sessions, venues, times, cateringTime commitment from other participants:– Change Management expert to conduct analysis and run workshops.Out of pocket expenses:
* Sessions run by a Change Management Analyst who is a part-time employee of the Bhabhathane Project Management Team. Consequently, the resources are budgeted for in Project Management cost estimates.
*These sessions could form part of staff development session the day before school starts each term or take place during breaks, so as not to intrude on teaching and learning time or extend the expectation that teachers attend 10 after school afternoon training sessions per annum as per 8.2.1 above.
|7.3 Principal Enrichment|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.3.1 Principal Forum||* The Principal Forum meets regularly.*Principals in the Valley support each other.* Principals learn from one another and from visiting schools of excellence outside the Valley.* Principals are committed to the transformation of education in the whole Valley.* Principals feel supported which is likely to build confidence and optimism.||Design:* Build relationships between Principals in the Valley.*Research schools of excellence for Principals to visit.Implementation:* Communicate times and meetings dates of Forum meetings to Principals.* Arrange visits to schools of excellence outside the Valley.||* Bhabhathane time to:- schedule Forum meetings- arrange visits to schools of excellence, timetables, transport etc.Out of pocket expenses:Once off:* Transport for 8 Principals to visit schools of excellence twice per annum R2 400.|
|7.3.2 Leadership development||* There is regular input from experts in leadership.* Principals become skilled and visionary leaders.* Principals are central role players in driving the mission and vision of their school.* Principals are able to develop leadership structures in their school.* Principals have confidence in their leadership ability.* Principals are accessible to the learners, parents and wider community.
* Principals provide optimistic leadership and have increased energy.
* Broaden the leadership base at the schools by holding leadership training sessions with School Management Teams (SMTs).
|Design:* Research individuals or organisations that specialise in leadership development (and conflict management, assertiveness training etc.)* Consult with Principals and School Management Teams regarding areas for development.Implementation:* Leadership training sessions for Principals.* SMTs invited to joint leadership session with the Principals when appropriate.||* Bhabhathane time to:- source experts in leadership training and development- schedule leadership training sessions, venues, catering and so forth.Time commitment from Principals to:- attend afternoon sessions or evening/school holiday courses.Out of pocket expenses:
* Approximately R5 000 per training session x 4 per annum. Total R20 000.
|7.3.3 Personal development||* Principals attend personal development sessions and motivational talks that encourage excitement about the profession.* Principals feel optimistic and energetic about leading their school.* Learners, teachers, parents and the wider community benefit from Principals who are accessible to them.* Principals are valued within their community.||Design:* Research organisations that specialise in personal development workshops.* Consult with Principals regarding their development requirements.Implementation:* Implement personal development sessions such as motivational talks, self-development etc.||* Bhabhathane time to:- source personal development experts, arrange venue and so forth.* Principals’, Deputy Principals’, Internal Transformation Teams’ and School Management Teams’ time to attend overnight development session.Out of pocket expenses:Once off (per annum):* Overnight retreat for 8 Principals, 7 Deputies, approx. 32 SMT members and 8 ITT leaders at R550 per person. Total R30 250. Transport R5 000.|
|7.4 Special Needs|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.4.1 Teacher workshops to identify special needs/barriers to learning||* Teachers attend workshops and training sessions that assist them to identify and cope with children who have special needs/barriers to learning in their classrooms.* Teachers are able to put the necessary educational interventions in place in order for learners with special needs to cope in the mainstream classroom.||Design:* Research expert or organisations that deal with special needs/barriers to learning.Implementation:* Arrange teacher information and training sessions.||* Bhabhathane time to:- source appropriate experts to run teacher workshops or training sessions.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:* Included in 8.2.1 above.|
|7.4.2 Partnerships with Government and special needs professionals||* Teachers work in partnership with the WCED Directorate of Special Needs Education to find solutions and methods to support children with special needs.* Teachers have direct access to and are supported by a team of professionals who deal with special needs/barriers to learning.* Learners benefit from the specialist intervention.* Opportunities for a learner to receive individual psycho social support is included in the special needs intervention plans.* Establish a data base of existing services of social workers and psychologists.* Use interns from the Universities to work in the schools and provide emotional support for the learners.
* Use lay counsellors attached to churches to provide individual counselling.
|Design:* Strengthen partnership with the Directorate of Special Needs Education.* Work with the University Education Faculties to find out whether their final year students can assist with identifying special needs children.* Link with other NGOs working in the field of special needs.* Source specialists/experts in special needs and develop a team that can assist schools.Implementation:
* Develop partnership programmes.
|*Bhabhathane time to:- source social workers, remedial teachers and other professionals to assist with special needs learners- build relationship and partnership with the WCED Directorate of Special Needs Education.-build relationship with the Universities and get final year students to complete their practical component in the schools. Investigate Clinical Psychologists completing intern year at the schools.Time commitment of other participants:- Teachers’ time to consult with professionals
– Professionals to donate their time to work in the schools.
(The goal is that all partnerships are voluntary and at no cost to Bhabhathane).
Out of pocket expenses:
* Bhabhathane to employ 3 special needs professionals e.g. Social Worker, Psychologist, Occupational Therapist on a full time basis to work in the schools at approx.R360 000 per annum each.
|7.5 Parental Involvement|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.5.1 Parental involvement workshops||* Parents understand their core role and responsibilities:* Represent and support their children’s needs and interests.* Support teachers to deliver the curriculum, including extra-murals.* Support their children’s learning and wider development at home and in the community.* Support each other in both parenting and school involvement.*Support the schools’ wider management and development needs.
* Work closely with staff at the school.
|Design:* Research opportunities for partnership with other organisations that have experience in parental involvement work e.g. EMEPImplementation:* Run parental involvement initiatives in the schools||* Bhabhathane time to:- research possible partnerships or service providers.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:* Approximately R550 000 to run a full programme across 7 schools involving all parent and including workshops to empower SGB members (as per third party quotation received).|
|7.5.2 Parental Upskilling||* Parents have access to adult education classes e.g. literacy, entrepreneurial skills.||Design:* Research opportunities for partnership with other organisations that have experience in adult education e.g. Project First Step, Franschhoek Community Learning Centre.Implementation:* Run adult education classes.||* Bhabhathane time to:- research possible partnerships or service providers.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:* 10 meeting per annum with 80 parents. Transport costs per meeting R5 000, catering R1 600, facilitator fee R5 000. Total per meeting R11 600 x 10 = R116 000.|
|7.5.3 SGB Forum||* Regular SGB Chair Forum meetings are held.* SGBs across the Valley have a close relationship and support one another.* SGB members learn from one another and share experiences and expertise.* SGB members feel supported.* Increase in confidence in the role of SGBs.* Optimistic leadership from the SGB members.||Design:* Build relationships between the SGB Chairs and members.* Survey change readiness amongst SGB members.Implementation:* Organise SGB Chair Forum meetings.||* Bhabhathane time to:- arrange and schedule meetings, venues, catering and so forth.* Time commitment from SGB members to attend meetings.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:* No cost to Bhabhathane.|
|7.5.4 SGB Empowerment||* SGB members attend quarterly training sessions.* Development of skills to encourage wide parental involvement within the school parent body* SGB members are skilled and confident leaders of their schools and community.* SGBs becoming central role players in driving the vision and mission of the school.* Good working relationship with the Principal and staff.* Increased energy and commitment to the school.
* SGBs committed to the upliftment of education in the Valley.
|Design:* Source experts to run training sessions.* Conduct a survey of skill sets within current SGBs.* Conduct a survey of skill sets amongst parent bodies in the schools and the wider community to find out what expertise there is.Implementation:* Organise training sessions with SGBs.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- source appropriate experts and arrange meetings.* Time commitment from SGB members to attend training sessions.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:Cost included in 7.5.1 above.|
|Sub Project||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.6.1 Bhabhathane shuttle (to run between schools)||* All children in the Valley have access to safe transport to and from school.* There is an increase in extra mural or sporting activities as children have transport to outlying venues and home from school late in the afternoon.* Schools are able to provide transport for learners to attend educational outings and camps.* Improvement in punctuality as learners are no longer late for school owing to lack of transport.* Decrease in learner absenteeism.* Improved health as learners do not have to walk to school in the rain or cold.||Design:* Research other transport initiatives in the country, possible service providers and other outsourced quotesImplementation:* Select preferred supplier and negotiate contract.* Run a shuttle service between the schools.||* Bhabhathane time to:– research options for a bus service.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:Outsourced – monthly payment to service provider:R86 000 per month (service to include learners less than 5kms from school to deliver to school in the morning and return in the afternoon, one late afternoon per week for learners engaged in extra murals and 3 educational excursions each month). Total R860 000 for 10 months of the school year.
|7.7 Educational Resource Centre|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.7.1 Educational Resource Centre||The Centre has the following:* Bhabhathane Office.* Teacher resource library.* Learner resource room.* Fully equipped IT centre for learner, teacher, parent and community use.* Meeting rooms for teachers.
* An auditorium for guest speakers and presentations.
* Model classrooms for teaching demonstrations or teacher training using children from the schools.
* The Education Resource centre becomes a ‘professional hub’ for all schools to draw on financial, legal, HR or governance
* Teachers have access to quality resources
* Learners have access to a library and a space to complete school homework, research and study.
* Parents and community members have access to the resource library.
* Learners, teachers and parents have access to the ICT centre for research or to attend IT training sessions.
* The auditorium is regularly used for presentations and lectures.
* Model classrooms are regularly used for teacher training purposes.
* Schools have access to a professional body of experts to assist with all aspect of running a school.
|Design:* Gather input from education experts, architects, builders, Government agencies, community members and so forth as to the design of the Centre.* Plans drawn for the building.* Drawn up plans for equipping the Centre.Implementation:* Build and equip Centre.||* Bhabhathane time to:- coordinate meetings- oversee developments, building, purchase of equipment etc.Time commitments of other participants:- Teacher, learner and parent time to make use of the Centre.Out of pocket expenses:
* Estimate R8 000 000 to build Centre.
R8 000 per R/m2:
Total 995m2 x R8 000 = R7 960 000.
* Equipment approx. R1 000 000
* Maintenance of building and equipment approx. R20 000 per annum.
|7.7.2 Virtual Satellite Educational Resource Centres across the Valley||* Create virtual satellites centres of excellence in each of the schools e.g. a resource library at one school that all teachers, learners and parents have access to, an IT laboratory at another school, music auditorium etc.* All teachers have access to a range of excellent resources in any of the school in the Valley.* Cross school interaction occurs as teachers, learners and parents make use of centres of excellence spread amongst the schools in the Valley.||Design:* Analyse which schools have the potential to provide a satellite centre of excellence.* Develop the infrastructure to host a satellite centre of excellence at the school e.g. upgrade the sporting facilities, equip the ICT laboratory and so forth.Implementation:* Set up virtual satellite centres of excellence in individual schools.||* Bhabhathane time to:- research- set up satellite centres of excellence in individual schools.Out of pocket expenses:* Approx. R100 000 per satellite centre. Total R400 000.|
|7.8 Food Provision|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.8.1 Food provision||* 40% of learners at Franschhoek High School who do not benefit from the WCED feeding scheme are provided with a nutritious, appetising meal once a day.* There is an improvement in learners’ health.* There is a reduction in absenteeism.* There is a reduction in drop- out rates.* There is an improvement in learner achievement (both academic and extra curricula) owing to better health and concentration.* Learners enjoy school more.||Design:* Research opportunities for partnership with other organisations that provide food for school children (e.g. Peninsula School Feeding Scheme, Kusasa or individuals) and see if there potential for collaboration.* Research menu options.Implementation:* Provide 1 nutritious meal a day.||* Bhabhathane time to:- research possible partnerships or service providers- if food provision outsourced oversee project.Out of pocket expenses:On-going:* Approximately 120 children at a cost of R20 per day x 200 days. Total R480 000 per annum.
* Payment of a stipend to 2 parents involved in assisting with food preparation at Franschhoek High School paid R250 per month over 10 months. Total R5000 per annum.
|7.8.2 Kitchen and eating Infrastructure||* Schools have designated areas where food is served and eaten that are hygienic and well-equipped.* There is sufficient cutlery and crockery for the learners.* Learners feel valued owing to the care taken with regard to food provision and the clean, hygienic eating area provided by the school.||Design:* Conduct audit of kitchen and eating facilities at each school.* Plan building to improve infrastructure.* Cost equipment needed.Implementation:* Implement improvement in building infrastructure.
* Purchase necessary equipment.
|* Bhabhathane time to:- oversee the building and setting up of infrastructure and ensure that each school’s cooking and eating facility is well-equipped.Out of pocket expenses:Once off:* Establishing infrastructure*Buying of crockery and cutlery, fridges, stoves etc.
R100 000 per school. Total R600 000.
* Maintenance of buildings and equipment. R5 000 per school per annum. Total R30 000.
|7.9 Class Size|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.9.1 Teacher internship||* Set up internship programme in the State schools (2 per school) with members of the community where they study at a FET College and get paid a stipend through the SETA to act as classroom assistants or student teachers and achieve a ratio of 1:30.* Set up an internship programme (as above) at the ECD level to achieve a ratio of 1:20 in all private ECD centres.* Members of the community are employed.* Community members are encouraged to join the teaching profession.* Teachers are relieved from managing large classes.* Learners benefit from more individual attention which tends to result in better performance, increased motivation and so forth.||Design:* Research setting up teacher internships.* Advertise internship opportunities in the local press.* Interview prospective interns.* Research Colleges that offer qualifications.* Apply to FET Colleges or Universities for places in their programmes.
* Implement internships in the schools (2 per school).
|* Bhabhathane time to:- research internship options- complete all administrative tasks associated with internships such as communication with the SETA, filling in application forms etc.- inform the community about teacher internship opportunities.Out of pocket expenses:Once off:
Cost of placing advertisement in the local press R5 000.
|7.9.2 Teacher employment fund||* Establish a fund to pay SGB teacher posts (minimum of 2 per each of the Quintile 1 schools in the Valley) to reduce class sizes to a ratio of 1:30 at both the Primary and Secondary level.* Class sizes reduced.* Teachers able to give individual attention to the learners.* Less time taken up with administrative tasks and more time spent teaching.* Reduced class size impacts on and improves teacher morale.||Design:* Research salary scales for teachers* Advertise for teachers in the local and national press.* Interview prospective teachers.Implementation:* Employ teachers and place them in the schools.||Bhabhathane time to:- research salary scales- advertise teaching posts- interview prospective teachers.Time commitment from other participants:- Principals and SGBs to interview prospective teachers.
Out of pocket expenses:
To employ one teacher on a WCED salary scale is a minimum of R100 000 per annum. In order to impact on the schools a minimum of two teachers at each of the 5 Quintile 1 schools would need to be employed. Total R1 000 000 per annum.
|7.9.3 Volunteer teacher assistant||* Set up volunteer base of parents and retired teachers to assist per school e.g. “friends of Dalubuhle Primary”.||Design:* Advertise for volunteers or retired teachers.Implementation:* Introduce volunteers in the schools.||Bhabhathane time to:- advertise for volunteers or retired teachers and facilitate process of introducing them into the schools.Out of pocket expenses:Once off:R5 000 to place advertisement.|
|Description||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources (all six schools)|
|7.10.1 Short term ICT upgrade (6 state schools)||* Create a wireless environment to make access to cloud based resources and the internet available to all learners and teachers within the schools* Provide the fastest internet connectivity available in the area to allow effective access to web based curriculum resources* Create a reliable ICT environment through providing effective and sustainable technical support structures both internally and from external contractorsEnsure that all curriculum based technology is in optimal working order to support curriculum delivery with minimal breakdowns*Provide on-going professional development for teachers in ICT
|Design:* Arrange a comprehensive technical assessment of current technology and provide a proposal on possible repairs and upgrades.* Assess training needs of teachers.Implementation:* Install wireless routers into all schools* Arrange upgrades to all ADSL lines to 4Mbps and uncapped internet access
* Arrange third party technical SLA’s (Service Level Agreements)
*Arrange regular workshops and training sessions for teachers re ICT
|Bhabhathane time to:- assess and install equipment in the schools- organise training workshopsOut of pocket expenses:* Wireless routers – R24,090* 4Mbps ADSL lines -R30,600 pa
* Uncapped internet access -R29,160 pa
* Contracted technical support – R72,000 pa
* Technical assessment, repairs and upgrades – R126,565
ICT based courses will need an annual budget allocation.
Courses would have to be sourced or designed depending on the assessed proficiency of the candidates in the various focus areas. These areas could typically range from basic computer literacy to Microsoft Office applications, specific curriculum software, technical training etc.
Each course would need an assessment component and a valid acknowledgement of training or certificate that can be added to the teacher’s portfolio.
A typical after school 2 hour workshop session would cost about R5 000 with the number of sessions dependant on the length of the course.
Technical training (12 Systems Network Administrators SNA) – 4 x 2hour training sessions for level 1 and 2 training = R20,000
Fulltime facilitator paid by Bhabhathane to work in the 6 State schools at R300,000 per annum oversee maintenance, continuous upgrades, provide technical support, train teachers and so forth.
The following teacher training would be included in the 8.2 Teacher Enrichment sub project 8.2.2 Teacher Training estimated resources above:
* ICT training
* Curriculum training (including integration training in specific subjects)
|7.10.2 On-going ICT upgrading of labs and classrooms||* To upgrade ICT technology in order to build towards the vision of e-Teaching and e-Learning, through staying current with ICT hardware, software and internet access.*In practical terms, this should be achieved on a continuous annual upgrade cycle in conjunction with teacher training and other change management interventions.* Bearing in mind the national focus on numeracy and literacy, a logical phasing approach for Primary Schools could be to equip Grade 3 classrooms initially, followed by Grades 4, 5 and 6.*A logical approach for Secondary schools could be to equip the senior phase (Grades 10 – 12) Mathematics classrooms, then the Science classrooms, followed by other subjects.
|Design:The design phase should:* Confirm the most suitable equipment.* Identify preferred software in priority subject areas.* Verify physical facilities.* Negotiate with suppliers.
* Develop detailed migration plans from the current environments, bearing in mind the need to integrate people (i.e. teachers) and processes (teaching methods).
* Management and co-ordination of the various suppliers.
* Testing of all components.
* Training of teachers and learners.
|Out of pocket expenses:The estimated total cost of is this upgrade comprises lab cost and classroom cost.Lab upgrade cost is based on number of PC’s:learner of 1:10 and cost/PC of R10k (including infrastructure):
Classroom upgrade cost is based on R50k per classroom, being R20k for whiteboard, R6k for computer, R8k for data projector plus infrastructure:
TOTAL COST 11 400 000
This level of change cannot conceivably be undertaken within a short period such as a year, nor would this be affordable. Thus, it is proposed that the schools move onto an annual five-year rolling cycle costing about R2 280 000 pa. By the end of the five years the schools would largely be using current technology bearing in mind that plans will need to evolve as technology itself evolves.
|7. 11 Quick Wins|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.11. 1 Eye screening||* All children in the Valley who require spectacles are fitted with appropriate lenses.||Design:* Conduct eye screening for all children in the State Schools in the Valley.Implementation:* Fit learners with spectacles.||* Bhabhathane time to:- organise logistics such as initial screening at the school, transport to further appointments etc. with a liaison person in the schoolsOut of pocket expenses:Once off:* Assuming 3 500 learners to be screened over 117 days (30 per day) at a cost of R1 000 per day. Total for screening R117 000.* Approximately 262 learners will require spectacles at a cost of R450 per child. Total 118 000.|
|7.11.2 Cross school newsletter||* All schools contribute to the newsletter and the publication is relevant to all stakeholders in the Valley.* Used as an educational tool to encourage children to write, join an editorial team and learn about design and layout of a publication etc.||Design:* Write content, edit, publish, print and so forth once a quarter.Implementation:* Publish newsletter once a quarter||* Bhabhathane time to:* – collect news items, edit, collate, print, publish and distribute and so forthOut of pocket expenses:* One newsletter per quarter at a cost of approximately R10 000 per addition. Total R40 000.|
|Sub Projects||Objectives||Design and Implementation||Estimated Resources|
|7.12.1 Dashboard||* Create a reporting system to reflect, at a high level, Bhabhathane’s progress towards the achievement of the given outcomes. To be used by Steering Committee, donors, Project Management and others to monitor progress.||Design: To confirm outcomes, identify how and from where this information is going to be sourced and draft the reporting formats. Issues to be addressed will include the level of detail required, specifically, by school or in aggregate.Implementation: Dependent on information from a number of projects e.g. enrolment figures as well as independently sourced information e.g. absenteeism. Timing and implementation driven by availability of sufficient information to populate the Dashboard.||Bhabhathane time to:- Design the Dashboard, liaise with Steering Committee.Out of pocket expenses:Costs will be absorbed by the Project Management and Administration budget.|
- SUMMARY OF 10 HIGHEST PRIORITY PROJECTS ESTIMATED RESOURCES
The following table provides a summary of the estimated order of magnitude financial resources required for each sub project. Note that all figures presented are in 2013 Rands and do not include the cost of the time of teaching staff. It is further assumed that the Bhabhathane project team will be disbanded after three years. The columns shown are:
- Project (once off) costs: This column contains the estimated out of pocket costs associated with designing, implementing and the Bhabhathane team overseeing the operation for the first six months or one year period.
- Operational costs (per annum): This column contains the estimated on-going operational out of pocket costs after the Bhabhathane team has handed the project over.
- Donations in kind: It is anticipated that some proportion of donations to be made will be made in kind. On the assumption that this represents 10% of the total estimate, the total has been reduced by this amount.
- Contingency: On the assumption that these preliminary estimates are not yet refined, a contingency of 10% is made for estimating inaccuracy.
- IMPLEMENTATION APPROACH AND PROJECT BAR CHART
Initiating all ten projects simultaneously would increase project risk. Consequently, the Steering Committee agreed that there should be a more measured approach to the implementation of the Projects, which will be phased in the following way dependent on funding:
- The full ECD Project will be implemented immediately
- Food Provision and Transport will be implemented first as both of these have significant impact on the learners but do not involve the same process of change management as those Projects dealing directly with people
- Owing to the time constraints of both teachers and Principals and their need to focus on the core business of teaching and learning, a realistic expectation is that they attend a maximum of only 10 training sessions per annum. This will also enable the desirable level of communication and change management to be undertaken.
- The cross Valley networking, involving ECDs, teachers, Principals and SGBs will be the initial focus as this is less demanding on time than attending workshops
- Identifying potential quick wins will be on-going e.g. eye screening and the quarterly newsletter
- The short term ICT measures will be implemented within the first quarter.
The following bar chart shows a three year period with each year divided into quarters, representing the school terms. The purpose of the bar chart is to provide an indication of the length of time for the design and implementation phases and the sequence of the implementation of each Project. Since the implementation of the Projects is dependent on funding it may well be that individual Projects are implemented mid-year and not at the start of the year as indicated in the bar chart.
9.2 Project Bar Chart
- PROJECT ORGANISATION FOR DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION PHASES
The organisation chart below depicts the proposed structure of the participants in the Design and Implementation phases.
|BHABHATHANE STEERING COMMITTEE|
|PROJECT MANAGER 1|
|PROJECT MANAGER 2|
|PROJECT MANAGER 3|
|PROJECT TEAM 1|
|PROJECT TEAM 2|
|PROJECT TEAM 3|
|SCHOOL GOVERNING BODIES|
|INTERNAL TRANSFORMATION TEAMS|
The Bhabhathane Steering Committee retains overall control of the project (i.e. setting direction, approving all major decisions and communicating to the major stakeholders.
The Project Director will co-ordinate across the various projects and will report to the Steering Committee.
The individual Project Managers will manage their sub projects within their defined terms of reference.
The Project Teams will possess the skills required to undertake the specific sub project.
Internal Transformation Teams will be the primary contact point for individual project teams within each school, to allow them to co-ordinate demands on people’s time and present the focal point for Bhabhathane within the schools.
I. SCHOOL SURVEY REPORT.
INTRODUCTION 2 Actions taken 2
o Buildings and grounds 3
o Learners 3
Foundation phase 4
o Grade R 4
o Grade 1 4
o Grades 2 & 3 5
Intersen Phase 6
Excursions and educational visits 7
o Buildings and grounds 8
o Classrooms 9
o Learners 9
o Teaching and curriculum 10
o Conclusion 11
Attitudes, Values and Welfare
o Learners 12
o Teachers 12
o Parents 13
o Community 13
Classrooms and curriculum 14
Major problems 16
Appendix 1 – Interviews with Principals 16
Appendix 2 – Interviews with SGB Chairs 18
Appendix 3 – Interviews with Teachers 21
Appendix 4 – Interviews with Learners 24
In September 2012 Sue and John Gardener, accompanied by Alastair Wood, visited the schools in the Franschhoek Valley that have combined in the Franschhoek Schools Transformation Project (FSTP): Bridge House Primary and Secondary, Dalubuhle Primary, Franschhoek High and Primary, Groendal Primary, Groendal Secondary, Wemmershoek Primary and Wes-Eind Primary. The report on the information gained from interviews with the schools’ principals was presented to the Steering Committee. The FSTP decided to commission Sue Gardener to administer a further survey and analysis of the current condition of these schools. Arising from this analysis, recommendations for the future would be made aimed at fulfilling the goals of the FSTP as set out in its vision and mission statements: the creation through the schools of sustainable educational opportunities for all the children with benefits for them, their families and the community.
- A team of five experienced school analysts was brought in: Sue Gardener (leader), Annette Champion, Elizabeth Fullard, John Gardener and Rene van Niekerk.
- Statistical and technical information on the schools was obtained through WCED sources and through on-line surveys of the schools completed by the principals or their delegates.
- Each school selected its own Internal Transformation Team (ITT), whose duties within the school community and in particular the staff are to be advocates for the transformation objective of the project; to assist the analysts during each of their visits during the survey; and with the principal to play a key role thereafter in implementing recommendations agreed on.
- The FSTP hosted a launch of the project at its office on 4 February attended by the principals, SGB chairpersons, ITT teams, WCED officials, FSTP staff, consultants and the analysts. Much appreciated.
- A briefing meeting for the ITT members, with principals invited, was held on 13 February at Bridge House.
- All the schools were visited by analysts during the week 17-22 February. Jennifer Court of the FSTP staff gave valuable assistance as well. These visits included focus groups and interviews with the principals and SGB chairpersons, many of the teachers and a selection of learners. There was particular emphasis on observation of what is happening in the classrooms.
- This composite report on all the schools, with recommendations, will be submitted to the Steering Committee of the FSTP for consideration, decision and action.
- Each participating school will receive a more personal report on the visit by the analyst(s). The purpose of the individual school reports is not to repeat the statistical and technical information, or indeed to cover all the details of the findings in the schools, but rather to provide the schools with accounts of the analysts’ impressions of the schools.
VISITS TO SCHOOLS
Visited: Wemmershoek, Wes-Eind, Groendal, Dalubuhle, Franschhoek, Bridge House
Note that Bridge House is an exception to many of the points below.
BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS
The grounds of the schools are of different vintage, size and provisioning but all are kept tidy and free of litter. Sports fields are, on the whole, limited and play spaces are not equally provided and are of varying quality. There is some outdoor climbing equipment in all of the schools. Most have very little outdoor seating (benches etc.) available and not enough shade although in one school trees have been planted to combat this.
All the schools have a hall and library of some kind but in several cases the libraries have an inadequate number and selection of books or are presently not functioning. All the schools have a computer room but in several cases the computers are not functioning or are too few to accommodate the class sizes adequately. Lack of sufficient security is one of the reasons given as the reason for this. In addition the schools each have one or more other specialist rooms such as art, technology, multi-purpose, remedial. In three schools the learners’ toilet facilities are in very poor condition and are in urgent need of repair.
In summary most of the buildings and grounds of the Franschhoek primary schools are more or less adequate but in a number of cases they are not functioning at their best and would benefit from more on-site care and attention. Assistance with the provision of fairly basic equipment such as security, books, benches and computers would also make a big difference.
Many of the learners in Franschhoek experience difficult home circumstances including illiterate and or absent parents, poverty, crime, drug and alcohol abuse etc. Apart from the lack of positive role models that this may cause, it also means that parental participation in schooling is inevitably very limited and expectations of the monitoring of or assistance with homework are largely unrealistic.
However, despite their challenging home backgrounds, in all the schools it was found that most learners wore full school uniforms and were neat and tidy about their appearance, although this deteriorated noticeably from Grade 5 upwards. This trend can also be seen in the attendance at the schools with significantly more absenteeism from Grade 5 onwards. Absenteeism also increases in the winter.
Most learners have the school’s medium of instruction as mother tongue but all the schools have some learners who have a different mother tongue and in many cases this is not even the school’s FAL (First Additional Language). Children in this category have this as an extra disadvantage to overcome.
In nearly all the schools there was an atmosphere of purposefulness about the school and very good levels of discipline and cooperation particularly among the younger learners. There are mostly good structures in place to manage misbehaving learners. Unfortunately in at least two schools corporal punishment is still used despite being against the law, and in at least one school learners are denied food at school as a punishment.
In the four Quintile 1 schools food is available to all the learners but there are a surprising number who do not eat the school food but prefer to bring their own. It is also noticeable how few learners are wearing spectacles despite the recognised national average of 15% – 20% of children in this age group who need them. In one school it was noted that not a single learner in the entire school wears spectacles. One or two teachers commented on hearing impairment in some learners but on the whole teachers seemed unaware of this as a possible problem. Professional development in recognising medical and other disadvantages for learners could assist in this.
Good Early Childhood Development (ECD) is recognised as essential for the preparation of children for formal schooling and the Foundation Phase is far and away the most critical phase of the primary school. It is here that the building blocks are laid and unless these are adequately in place all the rest of schooling is compromised.
The importance of all the subjects in the curriculum is acknowledged with considerable respect and all the schools provide a reasonably balanced curriculum, with daily timetables which follow the CAPS requirements including Life Skills, some music and art. However, the acquisition of literacy and mathematics must be seen as critical and therefore the commentary below will focus very largely on the provision of effective tuition and experience in these essential subjects.
In one primary school all the learners in Grade R have received some pre-school education, and in two others the number is calculated at between 30% and 40%. The remaining three report numbers that are fewer than 15% with the lowest reckoned at 4% having been to pre-school. Of those many have attended ECDs which at best are poor and at worst are damaging. This results in the Grade R class teachers receiving many learners who are not only from homes that are under-resourced and generally lack education but also who have not yet developed the expected training and skills required to begin the Grade R curriculum. This in turn means that from the start the teachers are on the back foot.
In the survey among the deficits described by the Grade R teachers were:
- Poor speech, poorly developed home language
- Unfamiliarity with books
- Minimal fine motor development
- No number concepts or training
- Lack of concentration
- Unattended visual and hearing problems
Other difficulties experienced by teachers include the presence of two or three home languages among the learners, as well as recognised intellectual deficits. Several complained of having to spend time on basics such as toilet training and general good manners and more than one teacher mentioned sleepiness in the children.
Apart from Bridge House where a favourable ratio exists, the average ratio for rest of the Grade R classes is 25 learners to one teacher. In two schools the ratio is 30:1 with an assistant available once or twice a week. These large numbers make it impossible for teachers to provide personal attention to learners who are unable to keep up with the mainstream.
The Grade R classrooms are mostly adequate in size but in some cases lack equipment for basic activities such as sand and water play, easy access to painting and other art materials, sufficient scissors etc. for fine motor development activities.
Analysts report that the Grade R teachers are enthusiastic and prepared to put in extra time but several lack experience and/or training and need help in managing the curriculum expectations.
As can be seen in the previous section, all of the Grade 1 teachers receive a number of learners who are already behind the expected rate of development and all report on a number of learners with learning barriers or special needs. The most extreme case reported by a school was: ‘several have not attended Grade R; one has intellectual problems, four are identified as having other special needs, sixteen are repeating Grade 1’.
The existing developmental lags described above suggest that the teacher:learner ratios need to be very favourable if the teachers are to bring the learners up to standard. Apart from Bridge House which has very generous ratio they are not at all favourable with the average Grade 1 teacher having to manage 35 learners.
In most of the schools the Grade 1 classrooms have sufficient space, are bright and airy with attractive displays, and they have age-appropriate furniture. The use of IT equipment was seen in only one school.
In the Grade 1 classes there is an atmosphere of purposefulness, teachers are familiar with the CAPS curriculum expectations and follow the prescribed time allocations. Most have attended CAPS courses and they have the books and equipment prescribed in the curriculum. In some schools teachers report that the WCED subject advisers are very helpful and supportive. Most of the teachers in this grade are confident in teaching beginning literacy and employ a range of accepted early reading methods. Several schools requested assistance to acquire a greater variety of reading material, in particular the ‘Big Books’. In all the schools there are books provided for leisure reading but the display of these books was generally unexciting and seating space was not allocated.
Most of the teachers appear to be relatively experienced in developing number concepts although several felt that they needed more training in this. Concrete maths equipment is used daily in most Grade 1 classes but in several classes there is not enough of this equipment and the children have to share. Some teachers admitted to finding it a challenge to balance the need for practical experience using equipment with the curriculum demands. Clearly more training is required in this essential feature of maths tuition.
Even with the largely good practice in Grade 1 described above, considering the fact that many or most learners have come from difficult home circumstances, have a poorly developed mother tongue and have parents with minimal education, more time is required for literacy and maths in order to be able to provide the scaffolding needed to support the acquisition of literacy and maths. As well as more time for the whole class, in most schools the class sizes make it very difficult for teachers to differentiate meaningfully or to provide the extra help needed by the many learners who are unable to access beginning reading or to understand the essential concepts of early maths. In most of the schools the teachers described their single greatest need as an assistant teacher. A suggestion made by the remedial teacher in one school was that the Grade 1 teachers should be provided with an extra hour of tuition assistance every day.
Grades 2 & 3
In Grades 2 and 3 the foundation work of literacy and maths is continued, with the curriculum building on that which has gone before. The provision of books and materials is much the same as in Grade 1. The analysts comment favourably on the work ethic and enthusiasm of both teachers and learners witnessed in these grades. Good examples of effective teaching were seen but also some slow and boring work. However, for all the reasons shown above there are many learners who enter Grade 2 unable to read at the required level and without having mastered basic numeracy. One school estimated this at a third of the learners. Teachers commented that the CAPS curriculum does not allow sufficient time for reinforcement so many learners lag further and further behind. The problem is further exacerbated in some of the schools by increasing class sizes with the extreme being one Grade 3 class with 46 learners
It is recommended that more time for literacy and numeracy is provided in Grades 2 and 3 and that teacher assistants or remedial help are made available. It is also recommended that teachers are exposed to professional development opportunities which will enable them to find creative ways to meet the many challenges that they face.
The intermediate/senior phase (Intersen) is a time for consolidating reading and number concepts, maintaining the excitement of learning and developing increasing independence. Falling between early learning and the high school, it is quite often a ‘neglected’ phase and learner interest in school can seriously diminish at this time. This is very evident in most of the Franschhoek schools.
Among these schools class sizes in the Intersen Phase differ dramatically with the extremes being 65 learners with one teacher and 18 learners with one teacher. In the three schools which are worst off in this respect the average class size in the Intersen Phase is 43. The class sizes are difficult for teachers to manage, and marking becomes a burden.
Perhaps a bigger problem is the classroom sizes and in some cases the unsuitable, over-large and old fashioned desks which make the rooms overcrowded and uncomfortable leading inevitably to disengagement, irritation and misbehaviour among the learners. The crowding also causes some teachers to resort to old fashioned drilling and chanting of rules, spellings, tables etc. with predictable results. One analyst commented: ‘Overcrowded classrooms hamper teaching in the Intersen Phase. There are no assistants to alleviate some of the problems of these cramped classrooms and that makes it difficult for teachers to even imagine, let alone implement, suggestions for improvement. In this phase it was clear that at least 20% of the class is not engaged in any given lesson. This has a negative impact on the effectiveness of the lesson for all learners.’
The biggest challenge, however, is the fact of many learners in the Intersen Phase who have not been able to keep up with literacy and maths during the earlier grades. Statistics provided by the schools tell some of the story:
School A: 40 % of learners in the Intersen Phase present with learning deficits.
School B: 10 low intellect learners, generally poor reading and spatial skills.
School C: Grade 4:± 100 learners judged to be at grade 2 level, 60% can’t read fluently.
Grade 5: 10% functionally illiterate, 12 learners referred to the Teacher Support team.
Grade 6: 50% of learners struggling at Grade 4/5 levels.
School D: Grade 4: 4 learners came up unable to read, Maths concepts are not developed, number values and tables not known.
Grade 5: Seem to have forgotten everything in Maths.
Grade 7: Badly developed home language, learners don’t read, 10 will just pass but will probably drop out in Grade 8 or 9.
School E: Grade 4: 30 identified special needs, 2 hearing problems, 4 repeating Grade 4.
Grade 5: 7 identified special needs, 2 hearing problems, 6 repeating Grade 5.
Grade 6: 2 identified special needs, 5 hearing and 6 visual problems, 4 repeating Grade 6
This is not to suggest that there is no good teaching in the Intersen Phase. Analysts noted pockets of excellent teaching, but to a large extent teachers had few variations in their teaching. Particularly analysts commented that lessons lacked pace, teachers talked too much and there was very limited opportunity for learners to participate meaningfully. The CAPS curriculum requirements are followed but throughout the phase the time allocation does not allow for the work to be covered, partly because much time is spent on redoing the work of the previous grade. The provided text books and workbooks are seen to be worthwhile but there is a constant struggle with reading and interpretation and in almost all cases there is little in the way of concrete maths equipment and limited use of what is available.
The availability of help from outside agencies such as KUSASA, and also from remedial teachers in some cases, brings some relief but generally the conditions are not conducive to educational progress. And so it is of little surprise that in almost all the schools the Litnum scores show a very disturbing drop between Grade 3 and Grade 6.
Achieving a lower teacher:learner ratio would clearly make a difference in the Intersen Phase. It is also strongly recommended that more contact time is made available for Maths and language, and that specialist teachers for Maths are considered. Teachers should be encouraged to increase their variety of approaches to teaching through opportunities to observe practices in other schools and by the availability of suitable courses. One analyst particularly commended the work of a teacher who had been involved in the University of Stellenbosch Maths and Literacy programme.
In addition it is strongly recommended that the schools find ways to make use of the multitude of excellent IT teaching and learning material available on the market. Teachers in most of the schools in particular expressed the hope that interactive whiteboards and data projectors could become available to them. One school demonstrated great familiarity with and competence in using IT material and their expertise could well be harnessed to teach and mentor other teachers.
On-going assessment is an important part of schooling and in the public school system careful structures are in place. The WCED baseline assessment provides teachers with an understanding of the competences of their learners and the ANAs (annual national assessments) assist with keeping records of learner progress in the CAPS curriculum. The aim of the tests is to improve the learner performance in the primary school. The Systemic Tests for literacy and numeracy (Litnums) provide schools with comparison statistics. These assessment programmes place emphasis on accountability as well as the importance of providing quality teaching leading to quality learning. It is therefore important that the results reflect this. To ensure success a system needs to be implemented that enables the school to diagnose problems and track the progress of learners.
Among the schools in the survey there was found to be varying levels of recognition of the teaching value of the assessments. In most schools learners were prepared carefully for the tests using past papers and careful explanation of the format and numbering of the questions. In some cases assessment papers are re-worked and corrections completed. It is important that this practice is not done in isolation but that this type of questioning is integrated into the on-going curriculum to ensure that the learners are more familiar with the layout of the paper and test terminology.
Ideally the results should be used diagnostically and well organised intervention plans put in place so that there can be constructive follow up with definite goals and objectives determined. While this does happen in one or two schools, in others there is limited follow up and opportunities to track learner progress are neglected. It is recommended that principals and teachers are provided with opportunities to share ideas for best practice in this field.
EXCURSIONS AND EDUCATIONAL VISITS
Previous comment on the analysts’ observations of practice in the primary schools has largely focused on the hard graft of developing literacy and Maths in the primary school. It should not be thought that this must be done to the exclusion of broader educational opportunities. All learning comes through experience and providing variety and depth of experience is an essential feature of education. In particular where children’s home environment is limited by circumstances such as poverty it is important to recognise the responsibility of schools to provide as much exposure to beyond-school learning as their means allow. Simply the cost of the transport involved puts many excursions beyond the means of most schools.
The extent and variety of excursions provided by the schools analysed are hugely different, as is the degree of attention to extracting the maximum learning from the excursion experience. Schools have much to learn from each other about this.
Presently the following excursions are provided:
Grades R & 1: Butterfly World, Two Oceans Aquarium, Giraffe House, Crocodile farm,
Jonkershoek, Artscape Show.
Grades 2 & 3: Two Oceans Aquarium, Camp, Hike, Pick n Pay Shopping.
Grades 4 & 5: Wemmershoek Dam, Berg River Dam, Waterfront, Butterfly World, Museum, Two Oceans Aquarium, Planetarium, Museum, SABC Studios, Franschhoek Museum, Paarl Toy Museum, Rocklands, Table Mountain, Botanical Gardens, Spier Animal Sanctuary, Historical houses in Stellenbosch.
Grades 6 & 7: Two Oceans Aquarium, La Rochelle Nature Reserve, Cape Town Castle, MTN Science Centre, Cape Town Stadium, Hugeunot Museum, Planetarium, Camp, Gold Museum, Groote Schuur Hospital Medical Museum, Rondevlei, Camps, Koeberg, Iziko Museum, District 6 Museum, Simonstown Docks, World of Birds, Kleinplasie.
It is clear that there are serious flaws in the provision of state funded primary education in South Africa, and this is experienced in substantial measure at the schools in Franschhoek. It is not realistic to expect the project to be able to solve deep seated systemic issues in education and the community but there are a number of areas where the project can make a significant difference in bringing refreshment and hope into the schools. Basically these revolve around supporting the principal and teachers in ways which affirm their critical role in the schools and helps them to acquire the skills and tools to make the best of their circumstances and develop attitudes of more ambitious but realistic aspirations. Suggestions for ways toward achieving this are contained in the recommendations which follow later in this report.
Visited: Bridge House Senior School, Franschhoek High School, Groendal Secondary School
- Bridge House is an independent school; Franschhoek is ranked in Quintile 4; Groendal is ranked in Quintile 1. Many of the differences in their circumstances should be understood accordingly.
- Bridge House and Franschhoek each have Primary schools on the same premises and they work closely together under the same administration and governing body; Groendal has the Groendal Primary school not far away but under a separate SGB and Principal.
BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS
These vary greatly in range, extent and condition. Groendal, dating back to 1991, is set high on a hillside. Its total enrolment is today not far short of 1000. It has an imposingly large multi-storey building with classrooms, offices, etc. of conventional size enclosing several open spaces as well as a covered amphitheatre, which does duty as an assembly place and hall. There are some additional pre-fab rooms outside the main block. Movement between classrooms can take considerable time. Numerous staircases are a travel hazard. The effect is sturdy and functional but severe, and the whole shows signs of needing sprucing up and maintenance work, not least on items such as windows, pipes and blinds. Littering is not too bad but needs constant vigilance. There is some open space outside, but no playing fields or other such facilities; those games that are offered have to use fields such as the one at Groendal Primary. In need of attention are the toilets – much complained about – and the fencing, especially at the back where broken-down sections give access to undesirables who harass learners and deal in drugs.
Franschhoek, close to the town centre, can trace a history back to 1850 though the buildings are far more recent than that. The high school has 220 enrolled. The buildings, including the hall, are straightforward and traditional, adequate and in reasonable condition, though needing constant maintenance. Nearby are the Primary school and a hostel with 52 weekly boarders and five staff at present. The grounds are spacious and there is a playing field, and a swimming pool and tennis court. Toilets, as ever, need attention.
Bridge House was founded in 1995 in Simondium and moved to 10 hectares on land given by Graham Beck about 10km from Franschhoek. The Primary school and two boarding houses are on the same premises. The Senior School enrolment is nearing 300. The well-designed buildings, including the Bridge House theatre, are set against a backdrop of majestic vineyard and mountain scenery. There are spacious grounds and fine playing fields. Additions and extensions are being planned and built on a further Graham Beck donation of 18 hectares of adjoining land. Most of the facilities and equipment match the quality of the setting and buildings.
In all three schools the classrooms are of what one could call traditional shape and size. In that respect, they would be very suitable if the class numbers were less than, say, 30. At Groendal, however, this is not the case, except in a few subjects with lamentably few takers, such as Grade 12 Maths with four in 2013. But in some rooms the design of some of the desks and seats is such as to create the effect of overcrowding, which makes teacher access to individual learners irksome and deters any attempts at group work. This in turn tends to encourage overuse of the lecture-style of lesson and reduces initiative and active participation by learners in experimenting and making discoveries for themselves. Similarly, crowded classrooms may discourage use of technical equipment of various sorts, even in schools with such facilities.
Most classrooms have old-style green boards, not unskilfully used. But there was unanimity among teachers in both phases that interactive whiteboards should be available. These and other equipment such as data projectors, music players and the like are in use in some classes in the different schools. They should become the norm as soon as possible, and teachers should ensure that they are fully versed in the best ways of using them.
Some but not all of the classrooms visited had satisfactory storage space, shelves or cupboards, though a number did have storerooms and a place for the teacher to do marking and preparation.
One Art teacher was valiantly, though surprisingly successfully, doing his thing in a jam-packed under-stocked prefab. Notice boards were plentifully covered with posters of all sorts, but there was no referring to them, and little likelihood of their being changed often enough. Learners’ own work was seldom on display.
Computer rooms were in all the schools, but the crucial point is how fully and effectively they are used. From observation, not everywhere or enough; but the IT analyst will report on this. The same point applies to laboratories, though Groendal does not offer Science at all. It also applies to libraries – and Groendal does not have one. Books, especially those pertaining to the subjects taught there, should be available in each classroom for reference, e.g. dictionaries, as well as for borrowing. This is being initiated and arranged by some teachers, and becomes vital if no library or librarian is available.
Discipline – orderly behaviour – as observed in classrooms and around the school varied from adequate and acceptable, with very occasional instances of adolescent oafishness or harmless fooling about, to delightfully well-mannered attitudes, co-operative and purposeful. Uniforms are worn for the most part with care and pride. Most lack of punctuality could be attributed to transport troubles, and is reportedly worse in winter.
More serious – acknowledged in interviews with principals, teachers and learners themselves – are the effects on young people of the circumstances experienced in the homes and communities of too many of those who live in the Franschhoek valley. Poverty, unemployment, hunger, inadequate housing, abusive behaviour, widespread misuse of drugs and alcohol, crime – all take their toll. Some antisocial behaviour intrudes into the schools with harassment and drug peddling through the fences. Schools, teachers and outside agencies do what they can for individual casualties of such backgrounds. There are social workers but nowhere near enough of them. Even their endeavours, like those of the schools, can inevitably only lessen the results of these social ills and not remove their causes. Homework is often not easily or satisfactorily done, and many parents, themselves not well educated or sometimes even literate, cannot help. Many also do not or cannot contribute to the schools, either financially or by attendance at functions and SGB elections.
Another area of concern in this regard is the dropout rate especially in Grades 9 and 10. Lack of motivation and a feeling of worthlessness are not surprising considering the role models found in such a community.
Steps to deal with specific problems include testing the eyesight, hearing and teeth of learners. In one school a random check of 250 learners showed only 4 wearing glasses – one enquiry of a professional optician told us that 15 – 20% of youngsters of that age are likely to need spectacles. Feeding schemes exist, but more needs to be done – not to mention holiday time. Girls seemed to be more reluctant to make use of school feeding than boys.
Something that schools can readily do to counteract poor social conditions is to increase extra-mural activities, sports, music, drama, etc. Camps and expeditions also make a gratifying difference, as some schools are experiencing. These can also be a means of increasing awareness of the environment and the need to make the world a greener place.
TEACHING AND CURRICULUM – SENIOR (GR 8-9) AND FET (GR 10-12)
Teachers in all the schools and in both phases are well qualified and teaching to their strengths. They came across, in classes and in interviews, as knowledgeable, conscientious and approachable and keen to do their best for their learners – though fully aware of the barriers to learning discussed under Learners above.
Learners enter Grade 8, many carrying with them the deficiencies in basic skills of literacy and numeracy: they cannot read properly with full comprehension for themselves or communicating aloud with others; their writing is poor; and numerical skills are irretrievably underdeveloped. Teachers claim that some are three years behind, but up they come to struggle even more.
The language of instruction presents a problem. Franschhoek is a dual medium school, Afrikaans and English. But a number of isiXhosa speakers, most formerly at Dalubuhle Primary, have to learn through the English medium. This is considerately handled by the staff but is not good enough, especially as no isiXhosa is offered as a subject at any level. Groendal is a parallel medium school with two streams: Afrikaans medium and English medium. The English medium stream is almost totally isiXhosa speaking, and they can study isiXhosa HL. These classes tend to be large, but have a lower dropout rate. Bridge House has a few learners from foreign countries. They do not have English (the school’s medium of instruction) as home language and they need a second language for the NSC. The school does not offer isiXhosa. None of these problems has been totally solved. Separate isiXhosa-speaker classes were tried in one school but discontinued as being divisive.
Homework problems, largely bound up with domestic and social conditions, are reported on above under Learners. A full study of the nature and functions of homework is needed with a review of its modus operandi.
There seems to be little awareness or catering for learners with special needs and/or other barriers to learning, with different sorts of attention to them within or outside lesson times. Some schools have identified such learners and refer them to appropriate agencies (if available); others may have given up special efforts owing to a perceived lack of such agencies. Interviews with teachers revealed frustrations with the obstacles to full and satisfying education in the community and they seem as a survival mechanism to have shrugged themselves into a resigned acceptance that whatever will be, will be. A prime need is to have both teachers and learners adopt a can-do approach, spurred on soon by specific and achievable improvements.
Greatly influenced by the class sizes and furniture, and by sheer habit, the form of lessons tends to be mostly lecture-style: teacher talk and exposition, with or without back-up from textbook, worksheets, chalkboards or OHPs, and punctuated with questions from the teacher to check that the class are listening or remember what they were told yesterday. The two-way traffic of questions, both to and by the learners, is worth reviewing. Initiative by learners and suggestions, even if they risk being wrong, are important.
Particularly applicable to Grades 10-12 are the following:
- The choice to be made between Maths and Maths Literacy: this is greatly influenced by experience of Maths in both Primary school and in Grades 8-9. Some Grade 9 Maths teachers were agonising because they believe that many of the struggling learners at that stage would inevitably do Maths Lit and might just well have started it already, and that the impending change in the Grade 10-12 Maths syllabus would be perceived to be making it a tougher choice and induce even more to choose Maths Lit. At Groendal the total absence of Science as a subject was a further disincentive to choosing Maths – where would it lead one?
- Guidance in subject choices for Grades 10-12 as well as in later career path decisions is being done by staff members deputed to provide this service, some of them Life Orientation teachers. Outside agencies are also called in to assist and job shadowing is arranged, though not always frequently.
- Consideration should be given to offering further vocational subjects for NSC study, the truth being that many learners will not enter on an academic tertiary education.
- Much of what has been mentioned above under Learners about increasing extra-mural activities is especially applicable to this phase, as the ages of these learners should make them freer to move around beyond the school and learn more about the environment and the world out there.
- Familiarity with the use of computers should in these grades have become all in the day’s work.
Visiting the schools of the Franschhoek valley has been an illuminating experience. There have been challenges and there has been inspiration. In the nature of a report aimed at contributing to plans for improvement and transformation, much space has been taken in detailing areas of concern and providing analyses of what could be done by ‘a partnership of interdependent schools’ to enable ‘all children to achieve their potential’. The analysts have certainly been aware of the areas of concern in the Franschhoek schools, most of them found in some measure in many of our country’s schools. But they have also been encouraged and spurred on by the number of able, dedicated, knowledgeable and caring principals and teachers who have the welfare of their learners at heart. The onus will be on such people, together with a very substantial launching pad of serviceable facilities and equipment and the impetus of the combined initiatives now being instituted, to be responsible for moving toward a transformed education in the valley.
In the Senior School phases they should most of all create an atmosphere of excited, expectant positive-minded hope that makes school a place that is good to be in. There should be purposeful activities to enjoy, people to lead them and time to pursue them. Despite the limits to what the schools can do to alter the systems inherent in the organisation of education, or to change the patterns of our society, the analysts are convinced that setting out courses such as those in the recommendations would have hugely worthwhile and tipping-point influence on the road to transformation.
‘Wat is jouskool se drome?’
- The implementation of recommendations, in whatever formulation the Steering Committee decides on, should be done at individual school level; at Valley level (through the FSTP); or co-operatively at both levels.
- Suggested possible ‘Quick wins’ are indicated by **, and appear in bold type as the first items in their appropriate sections. Likely High Priority Actions are indicated by *. Many others should be begun as soon as possible, but attempting too much simultaneously could prove counterproductive.
ATTITUDES, VALUES AND WELFARE
‘…for all children to achieve their potential…’
- Learners should be enabled to have attitudes of self-esteem, thinking big, aiming high, enthusiasm and enquiry – ‘Yes, we can!’ **
- Set up regular checking on eyesight, hearing and teeth with professional help. Teachers should be trained to recognise these and other such needs. **
- Learners should be reliable, punctual, thorough, diligent and conscientious – all manifestations of integrity.
- They should be encouraged to have care for themselves, showing for example pride in the school uniform and understanding healthy and hygienic living.
- Promote learner activities which enable and expect them to serve others and the community.*
- Learner exchanges with schools in the valley, and elsewhere. *
- Engage the services of social workers to operate across the schools where needed; this in addition to what the WCED and some existing voluntary workers are doing. *
- Existing feeding schemes are doing well but should be reviewed. There were reports of children coming to school hungry. Their operation should not intrude on teaching time. Girls are said to be more reluctant than boys to make use of them. *
- Identify a number of promising learners in each school – at a grade to be determined – whose abilities, talents and attitudes are likely to fit them to proceed eventually to tertiary education and professional qualifications, and devise ways during their school careers of supporting and mentoring them and enabling them to fulfil their potential. Their success could be a beacon for others. *
‘…working in partnership with one another, sharing resources and learning from each other…’ * * *
- A paramount recommendation, already accepted by the FSTP, is the establishment of an Educational resources Centre in Franschhoek. In addition to administration, this will be a base in Franschhoek for meetings; courses such as IT and subject teaching, with groups discussing and exchanging ideas on best practice on various issues making use of information such as ANA and Litnum results; fundraising organisation, etc. It will be common ground in which all will have a stake and feel at home, a kindling place for teachers’ skills, enthusiasm, mutual trust, and problem-solving. **
- Corporal punishment is illegal, though there were reports of its occurrence. Alternative methods have to be found. **
- Discipline should be thoroughly understood, not primarily in its negative connotation of punishment but as seeing to it that the right things are done in the right way for the right reasons. Well-deserved affirmation, acknowledgement and praise are at least as important as fault-finding and punitive measures, probably more so…
- Teachers should aim to develop attitudes as indicated above, in learners and in themselves. They must not accept mediocrity, especially of effort, or become resigned to it or to poor conditions as being inevitable and never to be improved.
- Teachers should aspire to being worthwhile role models and taking seriously their responsibility in that regard.
- They should be aware of a variety of teaching methods and lesson patterns, and explore them. These include group work, the use of technology of various kinds, the importance of questions to and by learners, and getting learners to initiate and find out things for themselves without undue fear of making mistakes.
- Lessons should, where possible and appropriate, provide awareness of and links with the local community and the world beyond the school; joint excursions and contacts with other schools would help.
- The purposes, nature, frequency, timing, amount, supervision, marking and follow up of homework should be thoroughly investigated and monitored. This should happen school by school, phase by phase, and subject by subject. Conditions at home are crucially important. A similar exercise on revision for tests and examinations could be done.
- Teachers should be exposed to more opportunities for professional development.
- In all of this the role of the principal of each school is supremely influential and important. The principal should be the visionary inspirer and enabler in the transformation of the school.
‘…for all families to achieve their potential…’
- There is a need to devise realistic ways of helping parents to play more effective roles both at home, especially in relation to homework, and in advancing the welfare of the schools.
- The effects of poverty, joblessness and many kinds of domestic distress or worse lead to immense educational disadvantages for children in the valley. For the most part solutions to these problems are beyond the capabilities of the schools or the FSTP. However, participation in SGB elections and in parent/teacher meetings should be actively encouraged despite past unsuccessful efforts. Any ‘quick win’ actions arising from these recommendations will help.
- Parental help is needed to improve full enrolment and punctual attendance, as well as to reduce drop-out rates. *
- If schools were to become ‘centres of learning in the community’ there is even a possibility of extending adult education classes.
‘…for our community (Franschhoek) to achieve its potential…taking responsibility for our environment…’
- Schools should participate appropriately in the various Franschhoek festivals, possibly with a Franschhoek Teachers Day celebration, linked with International Teachers Day. **
- Schools should have the aim of becoming community centres – for adult education, meetings, special courses, etc. (See also above.)
- Teachers should be valued in the community and participate in its activities in their own right.
- Create learner awareness of the environment and environmental safety. Enable learners to play a role in any community actions in this regard.
- Ensure that there are well kept green spaces at schools, including vegetable gardens. *
- Organise recycling programmes. *
CLASSROOMS AND CURRICULUM
‘…creating a learning community…’
- Sport is possibly the area most likely to attract learners and can relatively easily be done on a combined basis. Games are currently played and are highlight experiences for many, but nowhere near all are involved. Expansion and extension should be a goal. **
- Extra-mural activities should be greatly increased. Music, drama, choirs and concerts, dancing, chess, debating and art are some areas to be explored. Peripatetic teachers could be hired. Outside enthusiasts in the Franschhoek community should be sought. Competitions and participation in festivals are possibilities. **
- The size of classes is in many instances a problem. At the change from one phase level to the next some classes have to increase over desirable limits because of regulations. Not all schools can solve this by employing SGB-financed teachers; help is needed from the WCED, and/or extra finances.
- Teacher assistants and internships should be explored as means of easing the stress of overlarge classes. Most schools were anxious for this kind of help. In Grade 1 for example, an extra hour per day of tuition assistance was suggested. Having sufficient support staff: secretarial, ground and maintenance workers, librarians, lab assistants, etc. is also vital. *
- At the entry level of each phase there is strong evidence that learners’ literacy and numeracy levels are far from good enough. There should be more time allocated for literacy and numeracy, in the early years and especially in Grades 2 and 3.*
- The range of subjects offered at senior level should be reviewed, to include if necessary vocational subjects. In particular the state of Maths teaching and the ratio of those taking Maths to those taking Maths Literacy and the reasons for it need review. Similarly, the Sciences are studied by very few. Guidance in subject choices is needed. *
- Facilities for each subject could be improved. Art, for instance, should have a room which is spacious enough and specially equipped.
- The issue of the language of instruction is serious. Afrikaans- and English-speaking learners are well catered for, but isiXhosa speakers are at a disadvantage. *
- Consider having supervised homework at school and/or extending school hours on, say, four days a week by ½ – 1 hour. (There would of course be problems, e.g. transport, but it’s worth trying.) Some Saturday classes do occur.
- Extend career guidance, job shadowing, work placements and assistance in choosing and financing tertiary education.
- Excursions and expeditions, which several of the schools currently undertake, are to be encouraged. Some could be done in combination with other schools. Attention should be given to gaining the maximum educational benefit from them beyond the admittedly worthwhile pursuit of fun and fitness.
- Explore the means of serving the needs of learners with special needs. There are many in the Franschhoek valley, and they receive little if any of the help they need. Qualified remedial teachers are required. *
‘…the physical dimension of human wellbeing…’
- Far too many toilets, for both staff and learners, are in a bad state. Their number, positioning, satisfactory equipment and amenities must be immediately checked, upgraded where necessary and cleaned. Checking and cleaning should become a regular, even daily occurrence. Bad behaviour and vandalism must be dealt with. **
- A library, with a good choice of books and other up-to-date tools of information is essential, with an enthusiastic teacher or librarian in charge. **
- Litter bins should be provided in strategic places. Clean-up days – perhaps with an element of competition – should be held, not least in order to increase awareness of the need for cleanliness and tidiness. (Put a FSTP logo on each?) **
- Transport is a major need. Some schools have a bus, but not all. Punctuality, ability to participate extra-murally after 2,30pm, attendance itself, especially in bad weather, is made very difficult without adequate transport arrangements. Private family transport is rare indeed. The solution could be an FSTP-backed venture on the lines of the Jammie Shuttle at UCT, or sponsored buses for schools or groups of nearby schools. **
- Sufficient competent maintenance staff members are vital. Defects such as broken windows, loose blinds and damaged furniture must be reported immediately. *
- Provision of computer room(s) is equally important. Teachers will need training in the use of computers. *
- Rooms for specialised subjects – Sciences, Art – should be suitably equipped.
- Other tools such as interactive whiteboards, OHPs, playback machines, computers, etc. should be available to all teachers requiring them. *
- Grade R rooms should have equipment for basic activities such as sand and water play. There should be access to painting and other art materials, and sufficient scissors for fine motor development activities. In Grades R and 1 there should be a variety of reading material – e.g. Big Books – and concrete Maths equipment and training for using it. Teachers need training in managing the curriculum expectations.
- Classroom furniture should be able to be easily rearranged for various purposes such as group work.
- Storage space must be adequate and accessible.
- Security is a concern in some schools. Fencing exists but is frequently breached. Guards are few in number, or not there at all. Harassment and alleged drug trafficking from jobless youths is a threat. The problem needs attention. *
‘…a partnership of interdependent schools…working in co-operation with Government departments and other organisations…’
- The FSTP office in Franschhoek is an excellent fait accompli. (See under Teachers’ Centre above.)
‘…create sustainable opportunities…’
- The FSTP has to ‘create sustainable funding streams’.
- The FSTP will determine which actions and projects will take priority; whether they should be done by individual schools, by groups of schools, by the valley as a whole, or by some combination of these; who should be responsible for carrying them out; and how they will be monitored and assessed. As one of its combined operations the FSTP should conduct team-building exercises for the Internal Transformation Teams (ITT) of the schools.
- The FSTP will be responsible for communication. This could include: a regular newsletter; use of the local press; possibly public meetings; and a website. One suggestion is making a film of the schools in the valley, which would also create excited vibes among the learners and staff.
- The FSTP will liaise and co-operate as appropriate with the WCED, teacher unions, and other agencies.
- The FSTP will in due course consider a regular (annual?) assessment of the schools to monitor progress in the project. Co-ordination with similar WCED measures in this respect would be advisable.
- The FSTP should assist where possible with the needs of the SGBs as they may arise.
MAJOR PROBLEMS – See above under references given.
- Personal and society problems: HIV, drugs and alcohol, pregnancies, suicide, parental abuse, criminal acts, etc. – Learners bullet 7.
- Feeding – Learners bullet 8.
- Discipline and Punishment – Teachers bullets 2 & 3.
- Absenteeism and Drop outs – Parents bullets 2 & 3.
- Literacy and numeracy levels – Classrooms and Curriculum bullet 5.
- Remedial teaching for special needs – Classrooms and Curriculum bullet 12.
- Transport – Facilities bullet 4.
- Security – Facilities bullet 12.
INTERVIEWS WITH PRINCIPALS
- What is the situation regarding staff turnover in your school?
- Some attrition over last 2 or 3 years.
- Leadership of Foundation Phase a problem.
- Reasonably stable; Governing Body posts help. Fee-paying parents decreasing.
- !2/34 still there since foundation in 1991; 7 with less than 5 years’ experience.
- Very low. Last appointment 9 years ago. A decrease in number of learners. Stability is positive though it can lead to stagnation.
- Promotion posts help; spouses’ situations can be an influencing factor.
- Approximately what percentage of learners have a mother-tongue which is not one of the teaching/instructional languages at your school?
- Some, and an increasing number with influx from E Cape and elsewhere – no figure given.
How do they cope? What special arrangements are made for them? Are they able to study their language, do it for NSC?
Different ‘solutions’ offered:
- Only ±1% manage well because they hear isiXhosa in home/community. But teachers manage somehow in classroom – no special arrangement.
- Language medium options: E/A for all as now; E/A and isiXhosa; keep E/A and extend Xh to HS level @ Dalubuhle – problem not solved. But drop-out rates not high – for language reasons.
- Two streams: Afrikaans and English-medium (for Xhosa-speakers with isiXhosa 1st Language offered).
- Less than 5% Xhosa parents say their children must speak Afrikaans.
- Some learners from afar have home languages not catered for either as LOL or subject.
- How do you feel about regular meeting and sharing best practice across schools (principals, phases, subjects). Is there sufficient trust for this to happen?
- Support strongly
- Trust is better, but not on good terms with all. Good feelings towards FSTP.
- Slow building of trust; laughter helps.
4. Ideas about achieving equity in South African education, with specific reference to the availability of resources:
In each school
- Improve teaching techniques by sharing with other schools – observation visits, etc.
- It’s a big task: no ideas forthcoming.
- Still a myth: not in our lifetime.
Across the community
- Learning centre for sharing best practice.
- Do you think that schools could share some facilities?
- Yes, careful planning needed, responsible usage; payment decided on.
- Yes: in sports and transport. Worth discussing e.g. for sports.
- Teachers could share skilled practices, sports facilities. There is willingness but red tape. Transport desirable but not essential.
- What is the extent of the teachers’ after-school commitments?
- Teachers leave 3:00-3:30 – no regular commitments.
- Not extensive, especially when it is realised it’s a big school, but some do sports and occasional choir work. (No music teacher or formal music in daily curriculum.)
- Could be more evenly spread.
Is there potential for lengthening the school hours?
- Some acceptance among staff but some opposition likely.
- Possible but with minimum enthusiasm or likelihood.
- Has been tried but no evidence of improved %age. Looking for other ways: outside tutors last July; children could easily stay.
- Extra ½ hour feasible.
7. How do you like the idea of joint staff development, sharing with other schools?
- Culture of behaviour has broken down?
- Yes, but no methods or specific ideas suggested.
- Staff happy to do it. Principals did 3 or 4 years ago. But few opportunities, and little opposition, except from one man.
- Need to improve skills, e.g. in IT and classroom management.
8. Do you think that educator and learner cross-school exchanges could work?
- Careful planning needed, worth trying. Uncertain of viability at Intersen Phase.
- Yes, but no methods suggested
- Yes, but the purposes must be clear, understood and properly carried out.
- Not sure; people get used to their situation. Observing is a good thing.
- Timing, structure and composition must be right. It will follow the creation of trust.
9. Have you any ideas about the possibility of establishing a transport programme to facilitate the mobility of learners?
- A shared FSTP bus (or buses)?
- School has a bus, a poor one that is joked about; not much done to improve or replace it.
- 60% could use this service; money is the difficulty.
- Absolutely; it would make a big difference, facilitating multi-school activities.
10. What do you understand by the term transformation:
In your school?
- Facilities for specialised lessons e.g. Science; needs personnel and culture of learning
- General acceptance of what FSTP. are propagating
- Equals change for the better in: quality of teaching, culture of learning; and subject choices.
- Being at ease with cultural differences – then both enriching and fun.
- Extend learning to the community with schools centres of learning
- Use education to eradicate poverty.
- Government can do a lot more.
11. Have you any reservations about the approach that has been adopted by the FSTP Steering Committee?
- Happy so far: good teamwork and open discussions appreciated.
- No reservations; none stated.
- Can see progress; confidence is still needed.
- Evolving well, but it’s a complicated task and pace should not be increased too early; read signals and keep evolving.
12. Wishes for personal development
- Improve project management skills; team building; management of staff.
- Would like to go away for one day with other principals.
- Prepare to be active in retirement.
13. Response to the idea of a Teachers’ Centre
- Yes, absolute necessity.
- Yes, but costs need to be watched.
- Yes, included as item in general acceptance of FSTP idea.
- Previously fell away. It must not be one person’s project – we must all own it.
- Be innovative in the model: mobile library, IT audit, etc.
14. What is your relationship with the WCED?
- Good; OK.
- Personally good and grateful but not happy with quintile rating
- On a personal level, OK, but red tape unacceptable.
15. What happens in the week that calls you out of school?
- After 12:00 if necessary; once a month at most; once a quarter regularly.
- Not often away, and don’t wish to be; no deputy as Numbers stand in the way of WCED’s allowing one.
- No problem: there is an excellent but unobtrusive Deputy.
- Not much.
16. What is your relationship with your SGB?
- Reasonably good with frank open relationship; they are supportive. Members not always able to attend at short notice.
- Not enough expertise, but Principal appreciates Chair very much and wonders what will happen when he goes.
- OK; really good – wonderful chairman; absolutely fine.
INTERVIEWS WITH SGB CHAIRS
- How do you feel about networking with other school chairmen in the community?
- Positive responses – vital; good to share ideas, experiences and expertise, especially
for new Chairs.
- Also: Ensure email efficiency among them.
- What is the situation regarding staff turnover in your school?
- Most stable; low turnover – SGB posts help a lot, financed by various events, valuable in themselves (though not easily done).
- Negative influences: classes too big; pay too low.
- Suggestions: Make one school a Science centre.
Teachers’ assistants a good idea.
3. Ideas about achieving equity in South African education, with specific reference to the availability of resources:
- In each school
o Identify problems/weaknesses for improvement, e.g. toilets.
o Show children a future to aspire to; give hope despite poverty.
o Get involved with other schools.
o Need for fresh blood including white teachers.
o Cautions: Much depends on the community and their acceptance of change.
- Across the community
o Government should improve security, housing, employment, education.
o Tuition – and boarding – fees must be made affordable or waived in some cases.
o Sport an area for advancement.
o Standards of teaching not good enough, especially in Maths and English.
4 Do you think that schools could share some facilities?
Yes – Suggestions include:
- Music, and links with Franschhoek festivals. Combine for dancing, drama, choirs, etc.
- Sport: sharing events, fields, coaching, an indoor sports centre – note HTA (Hope Through Action) and SCORE, striving for social upliftment through sport.
- School exchanges for learners.
- Exchange expertise and experiences with other schools – Teachers’ Centre.
5 Have you any ideas about the possibility of establishing a transport programme to facilitate the mobility of learners?
- A bus transport system is urgently needed; despite some schools’ having bus(es), there are serious problems: absenteeism and lack of punctuality, especially in bad weather, and this is one factor in drop outs.
- The WCED 5km ruling has not helped.
- Implications concern: driver(s), costs, licences, maintenance.
6 What do you understand by the term transformation?
In your school –
- Support and help for one another.
- Mobilise parents: help them to feel part of community, especially those who are uneducated; organise outings and combined activities.
- Change attitudes: think big; encourage aspiration and self-esteem.
- Teach life skills: hygiene, sports, environmental awareness, HIV awareness, anti-drugs and alcohol abuse, suicide counselling.
- Look for role models in the community.
- Talk to one another, understanding other cultures and problems.
- Share resources, knowledge, activities such as concerts and festivals, etc.
- Build trust among school, getting rid of divisions, racial and otherwise.
- Create equal opportunities.
South Africa –
- Need for economic and social upliftment – create jobs, alleviate poverty.
- Ensure equal education across provinces.
- Get people of colour into management positions.
- ‘It’s not political; it’s changing lives of ordinary people.’
7 Have you any reservations about the approach that has been adopted by the FSTP Steering Committee?
- Positive – Enjoy sharing views and problems; correct approach so far.
- Cautious – Wait and see, tough stuff to come; loose comment could undo things.
- Critical – Agreement at meetings but not acted out in schools; are there feelings of being threatened?
Chairs should be notified directly of meetings, and attend.
No follow up: nothing communicated to teachers after 30 July meeting; eye-testing not yet begun.
Planning taking too long; action needed.
8 What is your relationship with the principal?
- Mostly good – for a long time; proud of Principal and staff commitment; kept well informed; communication is good.
- But some poor communication and procrastination.
9 Are you happy with the way your SGB works?
- Mostly yes – but training needed; members new and rely too much on Chair.
- One comment: SGB make-up reflects demographics.
11 What is the financial position? Are you a Section 21/ Section 20?
- Some uncertainty about status.
- Finances: Stable but unable to buy essential equipment and funds for teaching assistants, toilets, sports, computers; struggle to raise funds for SGB posts.
- No knowledge; budget given by Principal.
12 What sort of turnout was there for the election? Is there parent apathy?
- It varies: poor in most for SGB elections, much better for meetings on learners’ progress, or when transport is given.
13 Has there been an opportunity for SGB training in this school? Financial training?
- WCED training is said to be good. Three meetings in 2012, but more needed, with emphasis on governance.
- One school reported that the whole SGB attends.
Additional points made:
- Some cases of poor discipline – language, fighting.
- Assistance needed to improve performance in ANAS, Litnum.
- Security is a problem – theft from outside, fencing stolen.
- Improve communication – newsletter; put FSTP on SGB agendas; supply plenty of info to all, including local press.
- Cater for the many special needs children.
- Poverty and joblessness induce turning to drugs.
DISCUSSIONS/INTERVIEWS WITH TEACHERS
- The joys and frustrations of teaching in this school
- Staff work well together;
- Learners’ achievements and progress;
- Some learners eager to learn despite home circumstances;
- School vibrant;
- Infrastructure good – library, hall, computers;
- Communication good.
- Socio-economic background – poor parental involvement. (See problems below.)
- Inadequate equipment such as computers, photocopiers; poor maintenance and delivery procedures.
- Weak discipline; bullying, fighting, sexual harassment.
- All-encompassing role expected of teachers; marking loads; extra-mural duties.
- Language problems: medium of instruction, basic language skills – reading poor.
- Overcrowding, class sizes.
- Teachers overwhelmed but aware of their important role; desired to feel more valued.
- Main problems encountered with the learners
- Home background: poverty; drugs; alcohol; parental neglect, apathy and abuse; unemployment; ‘hungry kids’; idle weekends; some live with carers. (A teacher who was once a pupil at her school said this is much worse than it was then.)
- Absenteeism and latecomers.
- Travel distances – lack of transport.
- Assistance needed for weak children – LSEN.
- Homework – classes could benefit.
- Learners don’t bring required material to school, e.g. stationery.
What sort of provision is there for pastoral care?
- Minimal except for help in school for individuals.
- Families wary of social workers’ intervention.
- Scarcity of social workers – ‘virtually no access’.
- Homeroom periods.
- How would you describe the standard of discipline at this school?
- Mixed responses: depends on classroom teacher; firm measures needed; challenging.
- Routine OK but major matters referred to principals.
- Some advocacy for corporal punishment.
What sort of work ethic do the learners have?
- Motivation often lacking; little incentive when they see adult experiences in their community, e.g. joblessness.
- Good in places, but often within bounds of low expectations and social disadvantages.
- How much support is available to you in dealing with specific disruptions (e.g. crime, pregnancy, substance abuse, parental abuse, etc.)?
- Dealt with on an ad hoc basis – police, social worker, etc;
- No formal organisation, but some wariness because of past experience.
- Counsellor at school.
- Physical resources needed:
In the school?
- Interactive whiteboards;
- Computers with programmes;
- CD player; musical instruments; photocopier;
- Library and books – shelves;
- New buildings (in one school).
- Better provision for storage; equipment broken or not working.
- Transport; toilet improvement urgently needed.
- Sports centre and a range of equipment; swimming pool.
- Better mark recording.
In the Franschhoek community?
- Use of mobile library.
- Availability of expertise:
In the Franschhoek community?
- Participate in festivals.
- Some (few) parents have and share expertise.
From the WCED?
- Some cynicism – no help with maintenance;
- One nurse for district; more thorough eye, hearing and teeth testing needed.
- Curriculum changes irritating and without enough support – CAPS.
- But – good curriculum adviser; praise for phase meetings and courses.
- Parental contribution to the learners’ education:
- Not much help; semi-literate, work late if not unemployed as many are; not enough interaction.
- Parents themselves need assistance and support.
- Positive in some cases.
- The experience of the outside agencies that assist in the school:
- Kusasa, Solms Delta, Stellenbosch University, Fun-a-child, private sponsors and others appreciated but more needed. Some problems when children are taken out of class (Maths).
- Some donors to individual schools, e.g. Nedbank, Pep Stores.
- Mandarin lessons in one school – Stellenbosch University.
- Schools should do more for themselves; in some, caring individuals come in to help e.g. with reading.
- What are your after-school commitments?
- Various: sports, library, extra classes, cultural, some remedial work – in some schools more than others. Also: admin and marking.
- Too few expeditions and excursions.
- What opportunities are available to you for discussing your work with other teachers, e.g. sharing best practice, sharing results and discussing solutions, etc?
In your school
- Some but not much. There are courses and workshops, but keen for more.
- Some demurral, reluctance to find more time, too busy with own classes.
- Subject meetings in school.
With other schools
- Would like to share good practice.
- How do you like the idea of joint staff development, sharing with other schools?
Professional? Specific subjects?
- Welcomed, especially in respect of slow learners, language problems and planning
… but impossible said one; ‘sick of going on courses,’ said another.
- Yes. Leadership and management skills training needed.
- Do you think that teacher and learner cross-school exchanges, in or beyond the Franschhoek valley, could work?
How should we do it?
- Some would work; start and feelings will show and support will come; first by phases, then grades.
- Combine expertise, not necessarily exchange classes.
- Some already happening, but minimally.
- Response to the idea of a Teachers’ Centre in Franschhoek.
- Unanimous keenness.
- What do you understand by the term transformation:
In your school?
- Personal changes in each school, each one doing the best possible. Change in attitudes and mind sets concerning schools by all.
- Start at home with parent’s role.
- Lending a hand where we can.
- Doing things differently because of influence of other cultures.
- Orderliness and work ethic improvements; motivation, confidence, self-esteem.
- Keep debating and enquiring about transformation.
- Community should be involved and investing in schools.
- Schools should learn from each other; exchanges and visits: ‘Children need to know what others are experiencing.’ ‘Let kids talk to each other.’
- Learning what is meant by community – from other schools.
- Combine activities of various kinds; share facilities.
- ‘A chance to teach at another school for a day so I can experience what it’s like to walk in those shoes.’
- Watchword: ‘Unity, quality and equality’.
- Create job opportunities in the valley.
- Bursaries for learners.
In South Africa?
- Very slow in coming, especially in education.
- Health services; reduction in crime.
- Making a difference in someone’s life.
- Knowing and respecting how others live and feel.
- Equal opportunities, empowerment and privileges for all, regardless of race or financial status: e.g. in sporting and other occasions – Water week, Valentine’s Day, etc. Racism is now more a matter of material possessions and money than colour.
- Material conditions: e.g. transport.
- But – a number of cautions and reservations.
DISCUSSIONS WITH LEARNERS
- Common social problems experienced
- Home and community conditions: shacks, crime, parents and children drinking and doing drugs, stealing and rape.
- Corporal punishment, bullying, fighting, bad language, lack of respect – by and for teachers and learners.
- No food at school.
- Few play sport.
- Some books are outdated
- Lack of money for school things.
- Attitudes towards the school
Do you learn something every lesson?
Does your written work get marked? Do you get feedback?
- Yes, though not all or always.
- Most teachers approachable.
- Wishes for the school
- Condition of buildings should improve. Air conditioners.
- Hall, labs, computers; lockers needed.
- Technology in classes.
- Security, and get rid of graffiti and stealing.
- Better respect and manners by learners and teachers.
- More: sport – swimming pool, astroturf; and cultural opportunities – music, drama, dancing.
- Transport – new bus.
- Personal ambitions and fears
Have you been given any leadership training or opportunities?
- Yes. More needed.
Who are your role models?
- Mandela, Ramaphosa, Mother Teresa, Gandhi, sports stars;
- Teachers, older brother, mother.
- Other – arising from what has been your experience of the school
- ‘Love school and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.’
- Delight in the school and teachers.
- Desire to enrol in schools in Paarl, Cape Town.
II PROJECT PLANNING PHASE APPROACH, ORGANISATION AND LEADERSHIP
APPROACH TO PLANNING PHASE
|DEFINE CURRENT STATUSEngage Govt. Dept. & other organisationsSurvey ECDSurvey schools by phaseDefine status of valley-wide issues
|DEVELOP HIGHEST PRIORITY PROJECTS
|DEVELOP ACTION PLANS
|Steering Committee meetings|
|TARGET PROFILE IN THE MEDIUM TERM (3 – 5 YEARS)|
ORGANISATION AND LEADERSHIP
|INTERNAL TRANSFOR-MATION TEAMS|
|SCHOOL GOVERNING BODIES|
|EXPERTS (e.g. education)|
|FSTP STEERING COMMITTEE|
The chart below reflects the organisation of the FSTP Planning Phase.
The FSTP Steering Committee comprised the Principals of all eight schools (i.e. Bridge House College and Primary, Dalubuhle, Franschhoek High, Groendal Primary, Groendal Secondary, Wemmershoek Primary, Wes-Eind Primary), and Messrs Jim Lees, Ernest Messina and Rowan Smith. The committee was chaired by Mr Lance Cyster, Principal of Wes-Eind.
Project Management comprised Mr Alastair Wood, Franschhoek resident with extensive experience in projects of this nature in the corporate sector, and Ms Jennifer Court, well-qualified educationalist with wide experience in public and private sectors, particularly in development environments, and previously principal of a leading private school.
Western Cape Education Department (WCED), comprising Messrs Clifton Frolick (Director – Cape Winelands), Wille Maliwa (Circuit Manager), and Johann Burger (IMG).
NGO’s comprised of a number of NGO’s active within the education and community development with whom contact has been established to enable future close working relationships.
Experts included Ms Sue Gardener, Mr John Gardener, Ms Annette Champion, Dr Elizabeth Fullard, and Ms Rene van Niekerk, all highly experienced educators and skilled in the review of primary and secondary schools in public and private sectors.
Change Management, ICT and Process project team members. Specialist skills in the area of Change Management were supplied by Mr Rubin Adams, previously a teacher in the WCED, Mr Andre Pietersen, previously a senior member of the WCED Khanya project which involved the roll-out of ICT to all WCED schools, while the knowledge of school processes was provided by Ms Jennifer Court.
Members of School Governing Bodies (SGB’s), as the statutory body responsible for each school, were involved in key FSTP Steering Committee meetings and Chairmen consulted individually.
Principals were involved in their individual capacities at their schools as well as via their membership of the FSTP Steering Committee.
School Staff were involved individually during the schools’ survey and feedback, as well as being briefed regularly by Principals on project progress.
Internal Transformation Teams, comprising a representative group of teachers in each school were assigned the responsibility for leading the FSTP project within the schools’ environment. This responsibility will increase during future phases of work.
Office Administration was provided by Ms Yvette Bonzaaier.
 Action Plan 2014 – Towards the Realisation of Schooling 2025