Pictured is Lydon Smit, teaching Life Sciences. Photo Credit: Jeppe High School for Boys

Teachers from Jeppe High School for Boys gave up their two-week breaks to make sure that grade 12 students from other schools got much-needed extra lessons.


Johannesburg, South Africa (04 November 2020) – What started as an idea, has meant the world to over 200 students from poorer schools. The headmaster of Jeppe High School for Boys, Mr Dale Jackson, launched the Jeppe community outreach academic support programme for around 40 students from Kensington, Malvern and Jeppestown.

The programme took off and quickly, more students started joining the classes offered by the teachers from Jeppe. The students come from poorly resourced schools. They were in need of extra lessons leading up to grade 12 finals.

Teachers from the school even went as far as giving up their two-week break to continue offering extra lessons to the students in need.

“We have had to scramble to accommodate everyone within the Covid protocols, but we are coping and the teachers involved tell me that there is some good work going on in the various subjects,” – Mr Dale Jackson.

The reason for the extra lessons was that it became clear not all students had the same access to resources. Many students at Jeppe were able to keep up with their classwork and studied during the lockdown but the same couldn’t be said for students at the other schools in the area.

“We are aware that learners at many schools were not as fortunate and we had to rally and help them where we can,”

“We can’t resolve the crisis that schools are in, so we decided to focus on a manageable group and called on the Gauteng Department of Education to ask schools to send those matrics who are going for Bachelor passes. We felt it would be a tragedy if learners with potential had their chances spoilt because of Covid.”

Eighteen teachers stayed behind during the holidays to offer extra lessons for a variety of school subjects.

“Everyone was willing, the only ones who are not here are those who went away for the holiday week,”

“When I offered to pay them something out of our Covid Support Fund, every one of them said no – they insisted we keep that money for people who really need it.”

The school has done everything to make sure their neighbouring schools get the best chance at success. Mr Klaas Macheke, the acting circuit manager for the area that includes Jeppe, was proud of the work being done by the teachers.

“I feel uplifted and empowered by what is happening at Jeppe,”

“To have a principal with a transformative mindset, an SGB that allows the school resources to be used for this, and educators who are willing to give up their holiday, especially in this year, is mindblowing,” he said.

“The Department has had its work cut out in keeping the nutritional programme for poor schools going and just ensuring that the learners are safe. A programme like this that addresses the academic challenges that Covid brought, is just so welcome.” – Mr Klaas Macheke

We are stronger together and this pandemic has given so many people the chance to unite. The spirit of Ubuntu is alive and thriving in South Africa!

Sources: Jeppe High School for Boys
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Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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