Update on Schools Intervention Programme
On 8th October 2017, 17 South African teachers will arrive in Cholsey. They will stay with volunteer hosts over the week and will have the chance to visit Cholsey School, as well as other local schools. During these visits they will be able to learn more about Special Educational Needs (SEN) Interventions so that they can take this back to their schools to support underachieving pupils. They will be provided with the skills and resources to make a real difference in the lives of the pupils they teach. They will also experience the hospitality of Cholsey with meals and get togethers arranged, they will end their visit with a bus trip round London on the way back to the airport. If you would like to be involved with this please contact us.
The Kodumela Schools Link (Schools Intervention Programme)
Rosina the head of Mamokaile School knew, like all schools, she had children who were struggling. Having watched and taken part in small group and individual catch up sessions or interventions in Cholsey School in 2013 she took the idea back, along with as many photos resources and ideas she could carry! We were quite frankly exhausted at the end of her visit here. But what a difference it made .
We could not have dreamed so much progress could be made from one visit here. Both Mamokaile and Masekane School had new dedicated SEN (Intervention) rooms where struggling children could get specialised help to assist them in catching up with their peers. Rosina had succeeded in recruiting and training volunteers even getting a stipend from the government to pay two assistant teachers. She also rolled out the programme with Elizabeth, head of Masekane, and other interested schools. Her passion for teaching and learning meant she was not content with just improving learning in her own school but wanted it for all of the local schools. Her aim during our visit was to enthuse not only the other partner schools but engage the equivalent of county council officials and government including an SA Ofsted inspector!
It worked – we worked with some 35 staff from all 17 interested schools. Word spread so we have 62 schools, the equivalent of the whole county, wanting to run interventions along with two circuit managers who seem to be the equivalent of County officials. Most of these seem to want to come to the UK and learn alongside us as Rosina did! Our intention is to look for funding for the 17 schools who did our training to come here!
Since our visit to Kodumela in April 2015 Rosina and & Elizabeth have continued to run workshops and spread the intervention programme and training we did with the other schools. Whilst here in September more training and resources were shared to help with reading and mathematics in particular.
Typical class sizes in Sekororo schools are over 50 and individual attention for pupils in the classroom setting is virtually impossible. The results of running the programme were astounding. Children got it. They realised they were not stupid. They COULD do it. They learnt to read, write and add up and in many cases caught up with their peers and moved up grades. After one year of running the intervention programme on average children increased their score in goverment tests by 20 out of 100 across all grades! For example, a child who got 15% at the start of the year got 35% at the end of the year, which is a phenomenal 133% increase!
What we aim to do
We want to bring a representative from each of the 17 schools to attend a training programme at primary schools in South Oxfordshire.
We need to raise the funds to fly these representatives to the UK. All accommodation will be provided by local volunteers and the training will all be done by UK teachers and teaching assistants at no cost.
Schools beyond Limpopo are already hearing about this work so ultimately the intervention class programme may spread across the whole of South Africa, benefitting thousands of children
Why bring them here and not just send a team there?
We know from our 10 years working with the schools they need to SEE the teaching, join in with it and ask questions and only then they can actually teach it on their own. If we send a group there as we did in 2015 we can only deliver lessons based on what we can take and our own personal skills with no access to additional expertise. We have no internet there and therefore no access to further resources. However if all 17 schools come here for a week they will work in several schools with many different teachers which will enable them to learn so much more.
They are teachers who once shown, don’t just get it, they process the methods, adapt and plan how they would use it whilst having the extra benefit of being able to question our teachers!
Whilst here we intend the teachers will:
- Visit the range of local schools involved in the programme in small groups.
- Learn how different schools work, the different approaches and strategies used.
- Observe intervention classes, literacy, maths and learning through play sessions.
- Attend meetings after school to assimilate information and discuss any concepts or lessons that still need to be covered.
How could you help?
We know this project WILL work and this is some of our evidence from the 2012 trip of 2 headteachers who we funded to come to the UK to prove it!
- 2 schools set up intervention rooms and projects.
- The results of children who attended the intervention programme improved.
- Teachers we taught and demonstrated new strategies to, have taught these strategies at workshops in South Africa.
We can make a real difference to the real lives of so many of the poorest children in the most rural areas of Limpopo .
We have via crowdfunded, other donations and fundraisers raised over £15,000. If you would like to donate to us or would be able to organise a fundraising event, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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