Bergvliet High School has a Continuing Education Programme (CEP) which has been supporting and building links between the school and the community for close on 25 years.The school has been in the community for about 60 years and every term hundreds of courses are offered to the community, at reasonable prices, covering a wide range of topics that are of interest to the community. Short courses of general interest, topical issues, crafts and skills, computer skills, painting and drawing, practical cooking, first aid and photography are just a few of the course son offer. These courses run during the term from Mondays to Thursdays, from 19:00 to 21:00, with some courses being offered on Saturdays by popular demand.Bergvliet High School principal Stephen Price says some of the goals of the CEP are to provide a forum that will draw the community into the school and enable them to use the wonderful school facilities at night. “We aim to make our courses as accessible to as many people as possible by keeping the course fees affordable. The idea is to empower the unemployed by enabling them to learn the skills that would improve their chances of finding employment and also to provide work opportunities for the lecturers – with the emphasis on employing those residing in our community. We also want to promote and support businesses in the area and to create additional funds for the school,” he says.The CEP is divided into three sections with courses for the general community, for educators and for learners. Staff development is a generally a very costly affair, but Katharine Miles, CEP director who has been coordinating the programme for more than 20 years, has put together an impressive array of lecturers and courses at user-friendly prices. “So many local schools and businesses have found that their budgets have been able to stretch so much further as a result. The Matric Winter School in June/July and Grade 11 revision programme towards the end of the year have proven to be hugely popular with matrics and Grade 11 learners from all over the community attending support lessons from teachers who are handpicked by Miles. Subject specialists and teachers who are matric examiners and sub-examiners are recruited to present up-to-date information and subject support regarding the matric exams,” says Price.Price says their programme for the second term is not to be missed and should be available on their website soon. “Please register for our courses as soon as possible as the demand is high and some courses have limits on class sizes. I heartily recommend that you take the time to browse our prospectus and register soon. You will meet like-minded people. You will learn new things. You will find your creative spirit. You will grow in your job. You will have enormous fun doing it too,” concludes Price. V Katharine Miles can be contacted at the Continuing Education Programme office on 021 713 7999, fax 021 715 0631 or e-mail Katharine Miles at email@example.com or visit their website, www.bhs.org.za for more information.