Home News Department organises walk-in winter schools for Grade 12 learners

Department organises walk-in winter schools for Grade 12 learners

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In order to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on schooling, the Northern Cape Department of Education has organised school-based walk-in winter schools from July 12 until July 17 for the Grade 12 learners at under-performing high schools in the Province.

Grade 12 learners are being assisted with walk-in winter schools. Picture: Supplied

IN ORDER to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on schooling, the Northern Cape Department of Education has organised school-based walk-in winter schools from July 12 to July 17 for Grade 12 learners at under-performing high schools in the Province.

Department spokesperson Geoffrey van der Merwe said they would be focussing on subjects that learners may struggle with.

“The identified learners will receive tuition in the six most under-performing subjects at their respective schools. Each subject will be allocated a rotational time of six hours and will consist of consolidation of the most complex, heavily-weighted content, which will be facilitated through tutorials, robust discussion and dialogue,” said Van der Merwe.

“The subjects that have been prioritised, based on learner under-performance, include: Accounting, Afrikaans Home Language (HL), Agricultural Science, Business Studies, Consumer Studies, Economics, Geography, History, Life Sciences, Mathematics, Mathematical Literacy, Physical Sciences, Technical Mathematics and Technical Science Tourism.”

Van der Merwe said the learners will be provided with the required resources to complete the programme.

“The department has assigned curriculum advisers to develop resource materials, and we have deployed our most experienced teachers and curriculum advisers to render support and assistance to learners and teachers at those schools that are battling to achieve desirable outcomes in specific subjects.

“Learners will also write a pre- and post-test to evaluate the impact of the winter school programme.”

Van der Merwe said the current pandemic, and the subsequent lockdown, continues to be a huge challenge for the education sector and has resulted in a loss of teaching time.

“The 2021 Winter School Grade 12 programmes are well under way in the Northern Cape. In 2020, many learners progressed to the next grade despite significant learning losses due to numerous factors. Factors that contributed to learning losses include extended periods of school closures due to the hard lockdown, intermittent short-period school closures due to positive Covid-19 cases, shortages of teachers because of comorbidities, learners attending school on a rotation model and the absence of full-scale formal examinations.

“These circumstances then compelled the Department of Basic Education (DBE) to amend the Annual Teaching Plans and trim the curriculum to ensure a still acceptable standard, but more realistic learner outcomes, to save the academic year.

“All learners of 2020 had to contend with these challenges, including our current matric class of 2021, who were the Grade 11s of 2020.”

Van der Merwe said the department will ensure that all Covid-19 health protocols will be observed during the programme.

“The department is committed to ensuring the safety of all staff and learners and all Covid-19 health protocols have been put in place and will be strictly adhered to.

“The department believes that the winter school intervention programme will provide the momentum required to reduce the lack of remediation and consolidation in the high enrolment subjects.

“The department wishes to thank all principals and teachers who selflessly sacrificed their vacation time in order to support our Class of 2021, who represent the future of our country.”

He urged learners who do not form part of the programme to ensure that they stay up to speed with the curriculum during the school holiday.

“We encourage all parents and Grade 12 learners to make use of this opportunity to ensure that we improve our learning outcomes in the 2021 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations.

“The department will support the Class of 2021 every step of the way to ensure that they succeed in life.”

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