Eros School celebrates 50 years

2019-09-10 06:01
The Eros School choir gave a sterling performance at the 50th thanksgiving ceremony.

The Eros School choir gave a sterling performance at the 50th thanksgiving ceremony. (Siphesihle Notwabaza)

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Former and current learners, teachers and principals descended on Eros School hall on Tuesday 3 September to celebrate the school’s 50th anniversary.

The school, founded in 1969, caters for the needs of children with cerebral palsy, learning difficulties, physical disabilities and other special needs. It has 324 learners.

The school’s principal, Samuel Julius, said the school had a rich history. He added that many of their former learners were excelling in their respective fields.

“It is a blessing to be here. My heart is full. It (teaching) is of a higher calling. Standing here, I feel humbled by this majestic institution,” he said.

Julius said a big part of his duty is to be of service to learners and to set a good example. He urged the guests to play their part in promoting and encouraging education.

Donovan Cleophas, circuit manager for the Western Cape education department’s metro central education district, commended the staff for their dedication and praised the school for its performance in the national senior certificate exams.

In 2016, the school obtained a 94% pass rate. Between 2017 and 2018, the average was between 78% and 80%.

“These learners write the same exams as learners at ordinary schools,” Cleophas said.

He added that teachers at special needs schools had a difficult task, but they tackled it with ease.

“I have the utmost respect for staff members who work with children who live with disabilities,” he said.

He cautioned people against feeling sorry for learners and people with disabilities and called on the community to look at children with disabilities differently, and to defy the stereotypes.

“I would like to challenge adults to start a conversation around differently-abled people. Speak to at least two people and challenge their mindset,” he said.

The school also launched a book at the event called Fifty Years of Giving Hope. Former principal, Yosuf Yalkhen spearheaded the writing of the book, saying it took them a year and a half to compile it.

Yalkhen said the book documented all the memories of the school, from 1969 to 2019. He said they interviewed a range of people, including current learners, former teachers and principals. The books cost R350. According to Yalkhen, there is a limited number available. All the proceeds of the book will be donated to the school.

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