Jury: Why I’m leaving

2012-02-03 00:00

OUTGOING Maritzburg College headmaster Ron Jury says he is exhausted and it’s time for someone younger at the helm of the city’s top school.

Jury told The Witness his decision to opt for early retirement — he is 63 and would have been due to step down in 18 months — was not an easy one.

“I am exhausted and this position really needs someone younger who can really grapple with the ongoing challenges on a daily basis.

“While I am always one hundred percent committed to my job, I am being realistic about the demands.”

Jury will remain in the post until June. The search for his successor will be advertised through the normal channels.

The school governing body usually draws up a short-list of suitable candidates, which is then scrutinised by the provincial Education Department, which makes the final selection.

Jury said his 34 years at the school, including two as deputy and six as headmaster, had been “very rewarding”.

There had been many high points in his career, but his first love was always teaching.

“Even though I became headmaster I always made time to teach one class a year. Often that class was the highlight of my day because for me teaching is what it is all about.”

When pressed, he said that perhaps discipline issues were the tough ones.

“Very occasionally we have had a boy who just won’t buckle down and despite our attempts to help them fit in, they just rebel. It’s always tough to call it quits.

“As a headmaster I am not on the coalface of the discipline issues. But discipline is essential to the smooth running of any school — discipline and consistency.”

He said the education system as a whole faced challenges because there was a massive unemployment problem and many pupils who managed to pass matric entered a world where they could not find tertiary education or a job.

“It is my belief that these frustrated youths are the exact ‘captive market’ that Julius Malema is speaking to. These young people are angry at what they have to face in the real world.

“At Maritzburg College we have tried to teach our scholars more than just book work. But the real lessons are often what they learn on the sports field or in the debating team. Life skills are vitally important in a difficult world.”

Jury said the school offered teachers more than the average school because of the committed parent body.

“We have 40 teachers who are paid for by the government and our parent body subsidises an additional 35 teachers. Our staff give their all. Our students want to be here and they are dedicated to the ethos of the school.

“I hope for nothing more than that [the boys] will remember me as a good role model. I contributed to drawing up the core values of the school years ago and I believe I have tried to live by all of those.”

Adjusting his tie, Jury said that he was certain that Maritzburg College would continue to deliver quality education to future generations.

“It’s not about window dressing. When the boys give their farewell speeches they are really sad to leave.

“We are sad to see them go — that’s what we’ve got here.”

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.