Identifying the future now

The best mathematics, science and technology teachers in KwaZulu-Natal have been unearthed through the Aggrey Klaaste Mathematics, Science and Technology Educator of the Year Awards.

Practising teachers Thamsanqa Makhathini of Mpophomeni High School, Mandla Justice Dlamini of Bangibizo Primary School and retired teacher Colin van Tooren, who is still active as a mentor in Eshowe, will represent KwaZulu-Natal in the finals in Johannesburg next month.

Makhathini, Dlamini and Van Tooren, who were chosen in Pietermaritzburg at the weekend, join Free State's Malanka Motlhoioa, Maria Mokoena and Agnes Moadira, who were chosen two weeks ago and Mpumalanga's Thembekile Mashaba and Magda Viljoen, who were chosen early last week.

The other elimination rounds will be held in Western Cape tomorrow and Friday, North West on March 6 and 7, Limpopo on March 8 and 9, Gauteng on March 9 and 10 and Northern Cape on March 14.

The venue and date for the Eastern Cape elimination is still to be announced.

The Gauteng awards gala will be held in Johannesburg on March 22 for the top three national winners in Further Education and Training (FET), or high schools; General Education and Training (GET), or primary schools, and the retired teachers categories.

The Aggrey Klaaste Mathematics, Science and Technology Educator of the Year Awards honour Sowetan's founding father of the nation-building philosophy and seek to:

l Identify teachers who motivate, inspire and produce good results in maths, physical science and technology;

l Identify, record and publish the qualities and characteristics of practice that made these teachers stand out;

l Award practising and retired teachers for their efforts to dispel myths linked to these subjects.

Candidates are nominated by their pupils, community members, principals and other teachers. The competition is open to all teachers in public schools.

Nominees are interviewed by a panel the members that include maths, science and technology specialists.