There's no stopping us now - Tree school pupils
THERE is hope that pupils who spent half the year learning under trees in Senwabarwana, Limpopo, will pass their year-end exams after hard work by teachers.
Pupils at Selowe Primary School at Silvermine village, which is operating as an offshoot of Kgwale Primary in a neighbouring village, started attending a conventional schooling programme in July.
This was after a call by parents that the provincial department of education establish a school in their village. They feared for the safety of their children, who had to walk through bush and open veld to attend schools.
The pupils were also initially taught by unqualified teachers, most of whom were volunteers.
Lessons were offered under trees from January, until the department dispatched mobile classrooms in June. The school caters for 165 pupils between grades R and 7.
Acting principal Ephraim Raseruthe said yesterday that the pupils had been taken through a rigorous training programme to make up for lost time.
Raseruthe said both teachers and pupils had shown a commitment to produce good results. He added that - through cooperation between teachers and pupils - the school had been running afternoon classes to cover the syllabus.
"When the pupils wrote their trial or mock exams in September, they all performed above expectations, and that was motivating," Raseruthe said. "I am sure that they are all going to pass."
Raseruthe said the school had been provided with toilets, and that two classrooms were already being built, while a borehole is due to be erected soon. Limpopo education spokesman Pat Kgomo said the authorities were committed to improving conditions at the school.
"And, from the promising progress report on the pupils' performance so far, we are convinced that the school might do well in the exams," Kgomo said.