New school hall for Parkhurst Primary

2017-11-21 06:00
A new school hall takes pride of place at Parkhurst Primary School.

A new school hall takes pride of place at Parkhurst Primary School.

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The staff and learners of Parkhurst Primary School now proudly play host to a new school hall.

Serving 1251 children, the school was the recent beneficiary of a R6.5m school hall, one of nearly 100 built by the Garden Cities Archway Foundation in the past 12 years.

School principal Ivan Coraizin had been a teacher at the school for 32 years and has been the principal for the last three years. He says having a school hall means far more than the prestige and comfort it affords the children and teachers.

“We will be a community resource, with events such as birthdays, weddings and even church services, able to be held here. It will, of course, also help us with fundraising for all the essential things the school does not have,” says Coraizin.

The hall was completed around four months ago and was officially opened in a dedication ceremony on Saturday 11 ­November.

Chairs, curtains, a sound system and other equipment for the hall will be funded from events for which the hall is rented.

Before the arrival of their own hall, the 40-year-old school depended on other ­venues.

The Archway Foundation, which was established by the now nearly 100-year-old Garden Cities (the biggest and oldest residential developer in Cape Town), started funding and building halls 12 years ago and recently got the backing of the Western Cape education ­department.

The foundation aims to construct halls, with the schools also making a financial contribution to the projects.

By 2019 – the 100th anniversary of the company – the foundation hopes to have completed 100 school halls.

The foundation also provides bursaries for promising young students and partners with UWC in a programme to provide science learning centres to disadvantaged schools in the province.

Garden Cities group CEO John Matthews says there is still a long way to go to address equality in terms of facilities at schools. Around 600 school halls are still needed at underprivileged schools in the province, meaning that around 1m learners do not have access to a school hall.

Although the provincial education department’s partnership with the Archway Foundation in the provision of the halls is speeding up the delivery, Matthews says involvement from businesses would be appreciated to provide the rest of the much-needed school halls.

The foundation welcomes financial participation from other businesses that have social investment funds to help accelerate the work.V For more information call John Matthews on 021 558 7181.

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