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Pupil's top marks justify his school's faith in him

By unknown | Jan 03, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Gershwin Chuenyane

A high school in Atteridgeville, west of Pretoria, has bestowed its highest honour on a record- breaking matriculant who completed his schooling in eleven years and achieved three distinctions.

Seventeen-year-old Paul Mogashoa, who got A-grade passes in mathematics, biology and seTswana, will receive a trophy during a ceremony at the DrWF Nkomo High School next week.

Precocious Mogashoa completed only three months of Grade 10 before being promoted to Grade 11, where he became the top pupil in the grade.

He repeated the feat when he became the school's top matriculant last year.

The school's principal, Joe Senosha, said Mogashoa had vindicated the faith the school's management had in him when they decided to promote him to Grade 11.

"I was approached by a few teachers during his first term in Grade 10. They gave me a report that showed unusually high marks and, after some deliberation, we decided he should go to the next standard," Senosha said.

"We also supported him so he could deal with whatever he might have missed. He became a top pupil in Grade 11 and received several merit awards.

"He is now the school's top matriculant and we have decided to give him a trophy during a special ceremony on Friday next week," Senosha said.

Mogashoa told Sowetan he has decided to become a statistician because he loves mathematics. He has already applied to study at the University of Pretoria.

"I love maths. I find it interesting because it challenges you," he said.

Mogashoa said he had no bursary and would apply for a student loan.

He said he was a normal boy who did household chores, played golf and did nothing special.

"It was not until I went into Grade 12 that I started to study for about two hours a night twice a week. That was when I took things really seriously.

"I registered with the local library and stopped playing golf, and would study from 10pm to about 11.30pm at home.

"My secret is simple: just work hard, do your homework, practise your maths and, most of all, be pro-active.

"Don't wait for the teacher, stay slightly ahead of the game," Mogashoa said.


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