ProMaths gives students platform to succeed

Investec has awarded R100000 worth of bursaries to pupils who excelled at maths in matric in 2007.

Eight pupils from Johannesburg and two from Mpumalanga, who achieved distinctions, received bursaries worth R10000. In addition, the top overall performer was awarded a laptop and a portable printer to the value of R10000 .

The results illustrate the success of ProMaths, a project funded by Investec. It provides extra maths tuition to grade 10, 11 and 12 pupils from more than 25 high schools in and around Dobsonville, Soweto. The programme, which started in 2005, is administered by the Kutlwanong Maths, Science and Technology Centre.

Setlogane Manchidi, Investec's head of social investment, said results had improved remarkably since the project started in 2005.

"In 2007, for example, of the 106 pupils participating 77 students achieved passes between symbols A and D for maths higher grade," he said.

Bonga Skosana, from Reashoma High School, was the best overall achiever. He obtained 95 out of 100 in maths and 91percent in physical science.

Skosana said: "The ProMaths project helped me immensely because the standard at my school was not as good.

"Thanks to the motivation and advice from the teachers, I was able to secure a place in civil engineering at the University of Cape Town," he said.

The teachers who facilitated the tuition were also given prizes for their hard work and dedication.

Some of the successful interventions:

lExtra maths classes over weekends;

lAdditional tuition during the June and September holidays;

lA maximum of 20 students in a class;

lProvision where possible of stationery and study guides;

lRegular and continuous revision testing; and

lVisits to pupils at their own schools at least twice a year to further motivate them.