Teachers’ skills honed

2017-02-22 06:01
At a teacher support clinic are from the left Matshepo Moleko (Emmang Mmogo Comprehensive School in Kimberley), Ntombi Oliphant (Kgomotso High School in Pampierstad), Marang Majara (Tetlanyo High School in Kimberley), McBride Barendse (Noupoort Combined High School) and Collin Wingwe (Mogomotsi High School in Warrenton).

At a teacher support clinic are from the left Matshepo Moleko (Emmang Mmogo Comprehensive School in Kimberley), Ntombi Oliphant (Kgomotso High School in Pampierstad), Marang Majara (Tetlanyo High School in Kimberley), McBride Barendse (Noupoort Combined High School) and Collin Wingwe (Mogomotsi High School in Warrenton).

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About 300 Gr. 12 teachers in Life Sciences, Mathematics and Physical Science, as well as novice teachers, in the Northern Cape province benefitted when the Stellenbosch University Centre for Pedagogy (Suncep) offered support clinics earlier this month.

Hosted from 3 to 5 February at the Elizabeth Conradie School in Kimberley, the group was firstly welcomed by Henry Willemse, director of the FET Curriculum division of the Department of Education.

The Northern Cape Department of Education (NCDoE) plans to use such interventions to improve the pass rate of candidates in the National Senior Certificate examination.

Denise Sibiya, chief director of Curriculum Management and Delivery, highlighted in her keynote address that the Northern Cape pass rate in 2016 had improved to 78,7% (from 69,4% in 2015).

She explained that continuing professional teacher development formed the basis of an integrated delivery programme by the department to improve overall learner performance from Gr. R to Gr. 12.

The weekend’s clinics were part of the NCDoE’s drive to support teachers to teach challenging content in Mathematics, Life Sciences and Physical Science, as highlighted in the 2016 Matric Examination Diagnostic Report of the Department of Basic Education. The aim was further to model good teaching practice in the three subjects.

Suncep staff members, who facilitated the sessions, also focused on how best to manage and deliver the curriculum and to develop and deliver effective school-based assessments.

Regarding Life Sciences and Physical Science, the importance of practical work was also addressed.

Bobby Kunnath, Physical Science coordinator in the NCDoE, gave testimony that the teachers had benefited from attending the clinics.

“The difference in the scores of the tests written beforehand and afterwards (by the teachers) showed that there is already a big improvement in their understanding of the topics addressed,” said Kunnath.

“That is why we are very happy about the intervention.”

Patrick Huysamen of the Kakamas High School expressed how his weekend had been made special by the session.

“I learned more about specific themes. I think it was also very good for new teachers entering the profession and those who teach Gr. 12 for the first time,” said Huysamen.

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