Champs have made their teacher proud

Victor Mecoamere

Victor Mecoamere

The top three winners of the 2008 Smart Young Mindz Challenge will be announced at the Sandton Convention Centre tomorrow.

In the audience the proudest person will be veteran Kliptown High School technology and English teacher Lorraine Laurie.

The sprightly 62-year-old Laurie has nurtured the three teams that have made it to the finals of this challenge that takes place every year.

What's more, the team that is the challenge's 2007 champions are among the school's three participating groups.

"I am very proud because these children - Jermaine Goliath, 16, Mellisa Khatoin, 14, Zora Bailey, 14, Nemisha Granciol, 14 and Clarisa Lawrence, 15, - have transformed and have grown into leaders in their own right," a delighted and excited Laurie said.

"These children helped the other two teams to prepare their projects, they motivated the other participants and still had time and the maturity to work on their own team project," she said.

Laurie said the challenge was a great motivational tool for school children who feared mathematics and other technical subjects.

Smart Young Mindz is a youth development partnership programme of the Gauteng government's business infrastructure and investment development arm, Blue IQ, Sowetan, the Aggrey Klaaste Nation Building Foundation and the Gauteng Department of Education.

The project encourages Gauteng pupils in grades 8, 9 and 10 to develop a keener interest in, appreciation for and application of maths, physical science, technology, engineering, innovation and invention through seeking solutions to problems in their communities.