Having a mentor for a young high school learner can set you up for a life time. The guidance and mentoring that professionals give to high school learners is something that shouldn’t be taken for granted.
GetSmarter and IkamvaYouth (Nyanga Branch) have collaborated in one of IkamvaYouth’s core programmes, mentoring. Where a young professional is partnered up with a high school learner for 12 months and the mentor guides and assists the mentee in their academic walk from matric into tertiary.
IkamvaYouth learners made their way on the 25th of February to the GetSmarter offices in Observatory to meet with their mentee’s and get the ball rolling of the year. The matric learners were very excited to get out of their comfort zone and head to the big city with lights. The session started at 16:00 was intended to end at 18:00 however it was one interesting and fun session that it went slightly over time.
This relationship formed with Getsmarter is one exciting one for IkamvaYouth because the learners get to have quality mentors who are interested in their career and where they will be in the future.
We surely can’t wait for our next visit
As can be seen in our Annual Report 2014
was the year of growth for us: our matric class was 63% bigger than the previous year, we reached over 1,700 learners and we opened our tenth branch. But let’s not forget why we are here, for most of South Africa’s children, the only way out of poverty is through education. Ikamvanites (IkamvaYouth learners) continue to prove that anyone and everyone – irrespective of the school one attends and the socio-economic status of one’s parents can achieve his dreams and escape poverty.
Please read more in our 2014 annual report about the innovation of our model, why we need more Ikamvanites, hear from the Ikamvanites themselves and why our three largest donors of 2014 (Omidyar Network, Amalgamated Beverage Industries and Capitec Foundation) continue to support us.
It is thanks to these donors and many others that we have been able to achieve the results that we have over the last 12 years. South Africa’s future rests on the success of our children. IkamvaYouth is fundraising to reach even more of South Africa’s children in 2016 and needs your support. Please contact me if you would like to discuss supporting IkamvaYouth or find out more about us.
If you were asked to spell “conscientious” on the spot, chances are you would not get it right immediately unless you are a spelling geek. If you ever thought that spelling words out loud was as easy as writing them down, then think again. The grade 8s and 9s of Makhaza would definitely tell you this as they participated in a spelling bee competition, on the afternoon of the 07th November 2015, organized by one of IkamvaYouth’s SuperHereos, Lungile Madela.
The first round commenced with over 60, grade 8 &9 spellers, keen on taking the spelling bee champion title. There were 3 adjudicators for the day to assist with the process, namely; Yanga Totyi(Branch Assistant), Busiswa Wana(Intern), Lungile Madela(Tutor) and some of the tutors were present to support and cheer these Ikamvanites on. As the competition progressed, the number reduced as more spellers “fell” at spellings of words like “jurisdiction”, “randomly”, “trigonometry” etc.
The competition got intense when it reached the top 6 stage, with each participant attempting to out-spell the other. One of the top 6, Zizipho Paule (grade 9) said, “I underestimated spelling these words. When I received the preparation material, I browsed through it and it looked very easy until I was actually on that stage and I had to spell. I will definitely pay more attention to words now!”
We congratulate these “oh so eloquent” spellers who made the top 3:
3. Ntombozuko Zothe (grade 9)
2. Zizipho Paule (grade 9)
1. Lonwabo Ngozana (grade 8)
We live in a generation where innovation is an important aspect to the classroom; to make learning more enticing, to take the “bore” out of school and to leave a lasting lesson on the learners. Lessons learnt by the participants will go a long way. It is the “small” ideas that leave a ripple effect. Education goes far beyond the “teacher in front of the room” method. Education involves new and fresh ideas, fun, participation……innovation. It was remarkable to see an alteration in perspectives about spelling, something taken so lightly passively. The grade 8s and 9s will never look at spelling the same again.
Are you an after-school education organisation working in Gauteng?
Do you want to join a community of organisations working together, to deliver collective impact: improved academic achievement for learners in townships and rural areas, ensuring excellent matric results and access to tertiary, learnerships and jobs?
Would you like to receive training, support and funding to achieve this impact?
DOWNLOAD APPLICATION FORM
The Learning Trust (TLT) and IkamvaYouth have partnered to develop and expand the Collaborative Community, to ensure the delivery of high quality after-school tutoring programmes for South African youth living in township communities.
The Collaborative Community Programme (CCP) is a growing network of after-school programmes, where members are provided with knowledge, skills and resource-sharing opportunities. CCP aims to increase the number of high impact, sustainable tutoring programmes in South Africa.
You can get involved in various ways:
1) Become a member of the wider collaborative community, where you will be invited to take part in networking, skill sharing and targeted training sessions every other month and access a 2 day IY model introductory workshop and on-going tutor training.
2) Receive a grant for a full year of intensive training and support from The Learning Trust and IkamvaYouth. This programmatic training and support, bespoke capacity support in all areas of organisational development, such as the areas of strategy and M&E, fundraising and governance, and financial controls, as well as programme funding will enable organisations to implement the full IkamvaYouth model and increase their impact (*see criteria below).
3) Join the movement to track and monitor collective impact: use the customised database for monitoring and tracking, and become part of an ongoing independent impact evaluation.
All are welcome; please inform us about your programme and your needs. The deadline for applications is 5pm on Monday 2nd November 2015. We will be in touch in the first week of November.
To apply please download the application form HERE and return it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Criteria and Eligibility
*The following criteria need to be met by any organisation wanting to receive intensive training, support and programme funding:
- Be a registered NGO/non-profit
- Have a Board established, with regular Board meetings
- Have a secured venue for your tutoring programme that has the capacity for 80+ students
- Have at least 1 full-time salaried person or a committed founder/co-founder who has been involved in the programme for at least one year and is committed to making the programme work.
- Have an assistant (can be a volunteer); and a committed team of volunteer tutors
- Have a track-record of some consistent quality service/programme provided for at least one year
- Be willing and able to use database or excel spreadsheet template for standardised attendance and outcome tracking
- Have a collaborative mind-set and dedication to capacity building and team and wider community development
- Align closely with the 5 core values of IkamvaYouth and The Learning Trust’s values of humility, diversity, honesty and a commitment to learning.
- Be an emerging community based organisation or a more established organisation looking to improve or change its tutoring model.
In order to receive this support, organisations will also be expected to comply with IkamvaYouth’s minimum standards of quality implementation:
- Commitment: Learners need to meet a minimum 75% attendance requirement to keep their place in the programme
- Individual attention: Learners engage in small group peer-to-peer learning, striving towards a 1:5 tutor: learner ratio
- Consistency: 3 tutoring/homework sessions held per week
- Sustained support: Working with learners in grades 8 – 12; but not enrolling new grade 12s (ensuring 2 – 5 years’ involvement for each learner)
- Impact: Willingness and ability to recruit a cohort of at least 30 grade 10s and 20 grade 11s as of January 2016
- Learning how to Learn: Applying tutoring methodology rather than traditional teaching methods
- Enabling access to post-school opportunities: Each grade 12 learner is paired with a mentor who helps them to apply for tertiary education, learnerships or jobs and ensures that they enroll in a post-school opportunity after matriculating
- Democratic decision making: through inclusive forums and tutor meetings constructive feedback is received from beneficiaries and volunteers
- Parental involvement: A minimum of 3 parents’ meetings held per year
If you meet the above criteria and are committed to work towards implementing a tutoring programme as outlined above, please indicate as such on the application form.
Deadline for applications is Monday 2nd November 2015. Applications will be reviewed and you will be contacted for a follow-up telephonic interview in the week of the 2nd November 2015.
Successful applicants will be informed of next steps, which may include a site visit and a meeting with key programme, managerial staff and board members. The preliminary dates for these visits is 16-19 November.
Any organisations selected to receive programme support grants will then be required to submit a separate funding application directly to TLT in December.
The 5 Day training will take place at end of March/beginning of April 2016 and two members of staff from selected organisations must be available for the full training. Dates and attendance will be confirmed with organisations in November.
If you do not meet the requirements outlined here but are interested in working towards them or you would like to discuss your application and specific needs please contact Zoe Mann on 0744767965 or email email@example.com.
The Year Beyond programme has just had its very first successful winter school for 300 learners run by a group of 36 highly motivated volunteers. Winter school is a way of introducing our young learners to a wider world of opportunity through targeted career advice and mentoring activities, supplementary tutoring, excursions and workshops, and through career speakers offering advice and support to enable the learners to access tertiary education and employment.
Our winter schools were held at Phoenix, Manyano, ID Mkhize, and Oval North High Schools. We were hosted with warmth and the learners thoroughly enjoyed the experience. With the learners having never been to an established winter school programme, the experience unlocked their eyes and minds to a new sphere of possibilities.
Winter Schools are not like the daily routine of a normal school day, instead it’s about intensive tutoring and different workshops focussed on equipping the students with a sense of independence as well as ensuring that they leave with the confidence and understanding in mind, knowing that it starts with self. The activities and workshops were aligned with the intention of developing our learner’s leadership skills, level of awareness, valuing self and importantly raising awareness of the social issues affecting youth and the preventative actions that are available to them.
The core component of Year Beyond winter school is the academic content. Learners received 2 hour intensive tutoring sessions with a variety of tutoring resources including; past papers, mock exams and Answer Series study guides, English (Fundza) and Math (Olico) Fundamentals.
In addition to the academic emphasis, the winter school provided an opportunity for a number of workshops around themes relating to general life-skills, HIV/Aids awareness, filmmaking and personal presentation skills. Learners were also exposed to information helpful to choosing subjects when they start grade 10.
The varied workshops included; Peers in Sexual Health running workshops about teenage pregnancy / STIs/ HIV information and training through experiential games and role plays; UCT Health Faculty who ran TB awareness and movie screening for health awareness; a workshop from Live Magazine on how to build a newsletter and magazine, while Rae Human and partners gave a presentation from the Film and Publication Board covering topics like cyber safety, the film industry and the Board as national regulator that were geared towards enlightening learners to the dangers of the media landscape. Students filmed their own short documentary through crash courses in sound, lighting and directing. UCT Humanities Faculty ran subject choice workshops and requirements to access post school institutions, and many learners went on an excursion to the Jewish Museum which aimed to create an understanding, gain knowledge and an appreciation of religious and cultural diversity within our society, and to respect the dignity, rights and values of people from different religions and cultures.
Combination of Schools
As the old adage goes; two hands are better than one and combining two schools per cluster was the winning idea. Manyano high school combined with Intlanganiso high school at Manyano and Tafelsig combined with Oval North at Oval North High. Additionally, Phoenix combined with Heideveld at Phoenix and ID Mkhize combined with Leiden high at ID Mkhize high school. At this point it’s where we could see the excitement on learners’ face when they were introduced to their peers from different schools. Peer to peer support was the tool that was used by tutors to ensure learners supported one another, but also in building a culture of hard work and being responsible to and for each other.
A huge thanks to all the workshop facilitators, tutors and learners – Your passion, commitment, excitement and leadership shown over this time has started to set a precedent in the schools, instilling a culture of hard work and belief in the possibility of a bright and beautiful future!
It’s hard to believe we are already into the second school term with Year Beyond and the 8 schools we are working in! While there have been challenges and stumbles along the way, there are 8 schools in new communities where tutoring is actually happening, where learners are building a culture of taking responsibility for themselves and driving the agenda to ensure they fill the gaps in their learning, where tutors are showing up and really caring about their learners, their lives and how well they are doing at school.
Year Beyond is currently improving the grades of more than 500 learners working with 29 volunteers. The programme includes the IkamvaYouth model of peer to peer tutoring, tech-assisted English and Maths fundamentals through FunDza and Olico, and practical clubs that will introduce robotics, coding, and media during the holiday programmes.
A Heidveld High volunteer said that “We have managed to keep our numbers constant for the last four weeks. Now that we have contacted parents we are about to reach 50 learners. The learners are willing to come to tutoring even when there is no food. They come every day because they are willing to learn and that motivates us to come every day and bring our A game”
Just like in IkamvaYouth branches, learners identify work they don’t understand during class and bring these to the volunteers in the afternoons to work through and engage with their peers. One of the key aspects of the model is that our volunteers speak English to the learners. At Intlanganiso tutors said that when they first got to school, learners were very shy and reluctant to speak or answer in English. On the last day of the holiday programme tutors were very encouraged that the learners finally responded to their call of speaking English. The learners were very confident and acted out well the Fundza story ‘Dreamgirl’ speaking English the entire session.
Ntobeko from Oval North said that “Our time at Oval North thus far hasn’t been a complete train smash, although it hasn’t been a picnic either. The learners we tutor are often very demotivated when they come to us and it falls to us tutors to lift their spirits – this is especially true for the Gr 8s and Gr 9s where we need to work hard to encourage learning. I am proud to say that our efforts have really paid off in the academic results and lives of some students. Our best learners are hands down our Gr 10s where many of them now express far more interest in Mathematics and Science than before and respond very well to our tutoring. In Gr 8 we have a learner who was initially a bit of a handful but has now matured and is giving his all. He has shown great determination in overcoming his problems and we are very proud of him”.
In some of the schools, especially those where there is no culture of staying after school, engaging with homework and peers to support an understanding what was covered in class, the interest was low and initial learner signups were below what was expected. ID Mkize High volunteers dealt with this in an interesting way by not only explaining the programme to the learners but also to the parents who have been able to assist the volunteers in motivating learners to apply. The day after a parent meeting at the school the volunteers had over 60 learners at their door the next day applying to the programme! ID Mkhize volunteers say, “We are motivated to keep doing what we are doing because there are learners who really need our help and who appreciate it.”
We are very excited to leverage the lessons from Term 1 to ensure that the next couple of months see this programme gain further traction and excitement in our schools. If you are interested in getting involved as a tutor or volunteer or want any further information please get in touch with Liesel: firstname.lastname@example.org or Zukile: email@example.com