A gateway to a better education

2019-01-15 06:00

UPPER Highway resident Des Dunstone was a Highbury Preparatory foundation phase teacher for 22 years who, after retiring, started a literacy programme which focuses on introducing young pupils to English so that they are able to understand the language when they go to higher grades.

Dunstone explained that they introduced the Neema Literacy Programme to Inchanga Primary School to help them improve the pupils’ English.

“Children need to learn their mother tongue language but also English because all their subjects in school are being taught with it and it becomes a problem if they don’t understand the language,” she explained.

The aim of the programme is to teach the children through the use of computers and, despite the NPO being faced with the challenge of not having access to electricity, Dunstone said: “Even with that challenge, we had to carry on because we had a goal to have taught 50 pupils English by the end of the year.”

Further, she said that she’s not teaching the pupils, rather she’s facilitating the teachers into introducing the Neema Literacy programme:

“The teachers have done a phenomenal job because the pupils now know English and, when they go to another grade, they won’t have a problem understanding what the teachers are saying,” Dunstone explained.

As for the programme, Dunstone said that they couldn’t have done it without the support of the Kloof Baptist Church, who manages the programme, with Dunstone saying: “They support a number of schools in the Upper Highway area to implement this programme.”

In conclusion, Dunstone thanked Highbury Preparatory School, saying that their team would also not be able to function without the school’s support.

“They pay for all the photostatting of the booklets and support us with stationary collections and other necessary resources. Without them we would not be able to function,” she concluded.

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