It was a truly intimidating experience for the Edufundi team when we first walked into Ludwe Ngamlana school four years ago. The school had a staff component of 48 teachers that catered for 1500 learners, so we weren’t sure how we were going to make a difference given the size of the school.
There are 1080 learners at the school, but less than 20% of the parents and caregivers are involved in the education of their children. This lack of parental involvement places additional pressure on teachers and school leaders alike, which compounds what is already an extremely challenging learning environment.
The single most important component of the entire education system is the dynamic relationship that exists between the teacher, the learners and the curriculum itself. All of the policies, processes, structures and activities across the education system should therefore be structured in such a way as to enable and enhance the processes of teaching and learning in the classroom.
“The impact on teacher practice will be far greater when mentors are engaged in rigorous high-quality professional development. As a result there is a greater likelihood that the experience and outcomes for learners will improve. When we tend to the learning needs of all adults in the learning organisation, children will benefit.”
Edufundi believes in sustainability, not dependency. It is important, therefore, that the schools we support take ownership of the Programme for themselves. Once a school has graduated from the Programme, then the School Management Team – as instructional leaders – must be able to continue providing quality professional development and support.
It is all too familiar: long after the lesson has started learners are still dribbling in, showing little regard for the way they are distracting their classmates. While the teacher is talking the class is far from silent and attentive. When books are taken in for marking there are huge gaps where work has not been completed, and many books haven’t been handed in at all.
When Mr Tukulula joined Homba Primary as principal there were no school management team meetings or staff briefings taking place. Class management was ineffective and the school was not results-driven: marks were poor, no analysis of marks were being done and there was no code of conduct in place.
Reshomile Primary School is situated in one of the most notorious suburbs in Johannesburg and is a school that has been affected by the non-availability of resources compared to the other Gauteng Edufundi supported schools.