Time to Celebrate! Some Ikamvanites from Joza with their 2016 Matric results

The education system in the Eastern Cape is often described as “in crisis”, and pass rates are highly unequal between privileged and unprivileged schools. Schools’ pass rates in the Province in 2015 ranged from averages of 15% to 85%.

IkamvaYouth’s Joza branch is based in a peri-urban township just outside of Grahamstown.
The learners attend schools in Joza, which often” under-perform”; despite their proximity to some of the highest achieving academic schools in the country, and the university currently known as Rhodes. However, the class of 2016 turned the norm of under-performance on its head, delivering excellent results: 92% matric passes; 73% of which are Bachelor passes.

Vuyolwethu Zumani (Centre) achieved a Bachelor pass with 5 distinctions!

Vuyolwethu Zumani is one of the twelve matric learners from three schools in Joza who have been attending after-school tutoring at IkamvaYouth three times a week, and during the school holidays. Vuyolwethu achieved a Bachelor pass with five distinctions in Maths; Physical Sciences; Life Sciences; Geography and Life Orientation. He is one of the top achieving learners in the district and has been invited to the Premier’s celebrations in East London. This is a great achievement as he has had to clear some major hurdles, including the shortage of teachers at his school and the financial instability at home. He has been accepted to study towards a BSc majoring in Maths and Statistics at Rhodes this year. When asked about his secret to success, Vuyolwethu says “Sacrifice is key because there will be a lot of distractions during the year. Matrics need to stay focused and commit to their books”.

Pictured above from left to right: Nkosinathi Patosi (Branch Assistant), Siyanda Dyubhulu (Matriculant), Nompumezo Makinana (Branch Coordinator), Thandiwe Stuurman (Matriculant), Zipho Nxakala (Matriculant), Patrick Mashanda (Programmes Manager) celebrate the learners’ achievements.

Nompumezo Makinana is celebrating her one year anniversary as the Joza branch coordinator at IkamvaYouth today. “I’m beyond thrilled with this achievement. I joined the programme exactly a year ago and this morning I was anxious as I did not want to achieve less than what the branch achieved in 2015. It has not been an easy ride but the learners’ commitment to their studies must be applauded. Also the team behind the scenes, we could not have had these results without our tutors and national team that were there to support us and guide us to where we are” she says.

IkamvaYouth’s tutors are all volunteers; most are tertiary students, and many are ex-learners from the programme. IkamvaYouth Joza is funded by the Claude Leon Foundation, and partners include Nombulelo High School and Rhodes University Community Engagement. It is thanks to these and many more wonderful people who have applied their hearts and minds to assisting these learners. Ultimately though, it is the learners themselves who can be really proud of themselves and enjoy the rewards of their very hard work.

About
IkamvaYouth is a non-profit organisation, enabling disadvantaged youth to pull themselves and each other out of poverty through education. The organisation provides free after-school tutoring, career guidance, mentoring, computer literacy training and extra-curricular engagement to learners in grades 8-12. The organisation is currently operating in 16 townships in 5 provinces across South Africa. To find out more, go to www.ikamvayouth.org or call Hetile on 062 105 1707.


*Referenced in this article:
Huffington Post – A Sobering Case Study On The Eastern Cape Education System