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Expert tutors to help struggling schools

Written by Samona Murugan
Schools in Gauteng that have under-performed in last year’s matric exams are getting help from the provincial government through the expanded Secondary School Improvement Plan (SSIP). The plan, launched by the Gauteng Department of Education, includes Saturday classes by expert tutors.

The SSIP aims to reach 51 000 Grade 12 learners in 391 schools in Gauteng. More than 1 800 expert tutors will help Grade 12 learners to improve their performance.The SSIP aims to assist schools that achieved a pass rate of less than 80 per cent in the matric exams. The plan was launched at the Esokwazi Secondary School in Sebokeng and targets 51 000 Grade 12 learners in 391 schools throughout the province.

Gauteng Education MEC Barbara Creecy said the department increased the number of SSIP sites throughout the province this year from 94 to 109. Classes will be held every Saturday and during school holidays.

Expert tutors

More than 1 800 expert tutors have been employed to help Grade 12 learners. Students will be taught in Maths, Maths Literacy, Accounting, Physical Science, Life Science, History and Geography. Students studying Economics, Business Studies and English First Additional Language will get study material, as well as tuition in these subjects during the school holidays. As a result of the public sector strike last year, learners in schools across the country formed study groups to help catch up the work they missed.

These study groups played a major role in learner performance and encouraged learners to take greater responsibility for their own learning process. The department will now include self-study groups in the programme for the next three years and provide learners with study material.

Celebrities

In an effort to motivate learners to study consistently, celebrities such as sporting legends and motivational speakers, will visit the SSIP sites. Teachers from the SSIP schools will also receive training to ensure that the programme continues beyond the next three years.

Selected schools will carry out daily work in classrooms during the week, while SSIP lessons will be offered during weekends.

School districts will also monitor the programmes to identify, react to and resolve issues and problems faced by learners.

Drop-out rate

To target the high drop-out rate in the senior secondary schooling phase, the department is also offering tuition in Maths, Physical Science and Accounting to Grade 10 and 11 learners.

This programme will run during school holidays only and all Grade 10 and 11 learners are encouraged to participate.