IN A CLASS OF THEIR OWN! RURAL SCHOOL EXCEL IN 2016 MATRIC EXAMINATION. Herman Thebe Secondary achieves 91% pass rate in 2016 Grade 12 exams!
Against all odds Herman Thebe, a rural school excelled in 2016 matric examination, achieving a 91% overall pass rate with 23 learners getting Bachelor passes. This was an improvement from 2015 when the school attained 86%. The school also had to accommodate Grade 12 learners from Shadrack F. Zibi (a small secondary school nearby) and this pulled down the pass rate. In 2016, 50 of the 55 matriculants passed, 9 learners achieved 23 distinctions among themselves. The school has a perennial shortage of water and many times the toilets do not have water and learners have to use pit latrines. The classes are characterised by over-crowding. This makes quality teaching a challenge, nevertheless the Grade 12 class still excelled in 2016.
Herman Thebe Secondary is a rural public school situated approximately 110 km from Rustenburg in Mmatau Village. It is in Bojanala district and under Moses Kotane Area Office. The school catchment area is very wide as it accommodates learners from villages as far as Khayakhulu and Katnagel. It is a “no-fees school”. It offers NSC subjects that include Mathematics, Mathematical Literacy, English First Additional Language, Setswana Home Language, Life Orientation, Economics, Geography, Accounting, History, Life Sciences, Physical Sciences and Agricultural Sciences.
The school has 14 teachers and is headed by Ms. A.B. Putu, who is ably supported by Ms. Molefe as the deputy principal and Mr. Majwana who is the HOD of sciences. ‘’ We achieved 91% in 2016 but we could easily have achieved 100% had it not been for learners we accommodated from Shadrack F.Zibi at Grade 12’’ said the confident Ms. A.B. Putu. She explained, exuding confidence that the excellent results of the 2016 class came about because of hard work by the SMT, teachers and learners. The teachers at the school are committed and they work with the learners in the morning and afternoon, sometimes up to 8 in the evening. ‘’The strategy is to work with smaller groups of learners each time’’, explained the down to earth Ms. Putu. She supports the teachers all the way by ensuring that parents support their children. Further, she explained that the teachers account to the principal if the learners fail and hence she motivates her staff all the time. She leads by example as she teaches grade 12 Agricultural Sciences where she achieved 100% pass in 2016.
Last year she asked all grade 12 day scholars from the village to come and stay at school so that no teacher would say that learners were not attending lessons. Thus, she cut down on learner absenteeism and the results are there for everyone to see. When she is asked how she does it she smiles and says it is courageous leadership which NECT is “preaching” about. She explained that the NECT resources and support from curriculum change agents have benefited the school enormously. The teachers are using the resources and she is confident that learner performance will improve further. If the teachers take leave, the principal ensures that there is a plan in place to cover all outstanding content/topics and she monitors the implementation.