Ex-learners honour ‘Tyothi’

2018-10-11 06:02
Former Vuyani primary school principal Kinkin Qengwa received a portrait from Gugulethu 60th Anniversary. Sitting next to him from left is his former learner Ntozonke Bongo and (right) ward councillor Luvuyo Zondani (white shirtt). Sitting in front are both his former learners from left: Dr Xolile Vena and Andiswa Gaika. PHOTOS: UNATHI OBOSE

Former Vuyani primary school principal Kinkin Qengwa received a portrait from Gugulethu 60th Anniversary. Sitting next to him from left is his former learner Ntozonke Bongo and (right) ward councillor Luvuyo Zondani (white shirtt). Sitting in front are both his former learners from left: Dr Xolile Vena and Andiswa Gaika. PHOTOS: UNATHI OBOSE

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Kinkin Robert Qengwa, a former Gugulethu primary school principal, celebrated World Teachers Day with a surprise visit from past learners and colleagues at his house in NY1 last Friday.

The event was organised by the Gugulethu 60th Anniversary Coordinating Team, under the auspices of the Gugulethu Development Forum. Qengwa was presented with a portrait of the Gugulethu 60th Anniversary Coordinating Team, inscribed with his name. His former colleagues presented him with the school’s track top.

Qengwa had worked in Vuyani Primary School from 1961, retiring as a principal in 1996. He had transferred from the Retreat Bantu Community School, where he had taught since 1958.

The Group Areas Act culminated in the removal of black people from designated areas.

Phumzile Nteyi, project director at Gugulethu 60th Anniversary, described Qengwa as one of a number of former educators who availed their services to the community from the start.

“As the Gugulethu community, we are very proud to have Tata Qengwa as part of our community and also to celebrate his life while he is still alive. He made an immense contribution to our society by touching many people’s lives to make them better persons,” said Nteyi.

He said as Gugulethu was celebrating 60 years of existence, they have different developmental programmes every month.

“Now that it’s a World Teachers Day, we thought of Tata Qengwa and invited his former learners and colleagues to share their experiences about him,” he said.

Qengwa described the visit as a surprise.

However, he “was thrilled to see some of my former learners progressing in life.”

Comparing the standard of education between now and then, he said, “The standard of education is declining rapidly these days. And everyone can see the behaviour of the learners towards their educators. In our day, we were very strict, even with our dress code.”

Qengwa called on the government to revise the education system.

“If government can change the system and only educate learners on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. On Thursday they revise all the work that they’ve done for the past three days, then on Friday they write a test every week,” he said.

Vuyani Nangu, a former learner and colleague said Qengwa was dedicated to his job.

“He was my educator from 1967-1970. I also worked with him from 1986 until he went on retirement,”said Nangu, describing Qengwa as a hard worker who dedicated his life to his job. Qengwa’s son Phaphama, also a former learner, described his father as a no-nonsense person. He said his father was an educator at school and father at home.

“All four of his children studied at Vuyani primary under his tutelage. To be an educator’s son has its own pressures, because he always wanted to ensure that he was not biased to other learners.

We siblings had to master our school work,” said Phaphama.

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