Former security now a school teacher

Dalimfazwe’s long deferred dream now a reality

SPARK Schools security guard turned teacher, Joseph Dalimfazwe.
SPARK Schools security guard turned teacher, Joseph Dalimfazwe.
Image: Supplied

After dropping out of high school and becoming a security guard, Joseph Dalimfazwe has now qualified as a teacher at one of Gauteng schools.

The 49-year-old is now Blended Learning Facilitator at SPARK Rivonia after years of signing guests in and out and patrolling designated areas at the same school since 2018 at the Randpark Ridge campus. 

Dalimfazwe said he decided to leave school in Grade 10 because he felt like he had to assist his mother to support his four siblings financially.  

Born in Middelburg, a small town in the Eastern Cape, with a hope to find greener pastures, Dalimfazwe headed to Johannesburg with no plan of how he was going to make a living. 

“I decided to discontinue my education, feeling the burden on my mother was too much. 

“I then left my home and moved to Johannesburg for better job opportunities before I met a friend who suggested I enroll for security courses,” said Dalimfazwe. 

However, his knack for teaching was always at the back of his mind,and  he made sure to complete his high school education to pave a way to reach his dream. 

Came 2018, Dalimfazwe registered for a Higher Certificate in Adult Basic Education at the University of South Africa (Unisa). 

“After I passed my higher certificate, I decided to study further... so I began my journey of Bachelor of Education (BEd) degree in 2019."

Dalimfazwe had flexible hours and a leadership team willing to mentor and encourage him to pursue his dreams.  

“I had aspired to pursue education, and on joining the school, I had already decided to return to school,” Dalimfazwe said.  

“My colleague, Neftal Maluleke, a facilities maintenance staff member, significantly motivated me to continue my studies. He explained the various career paths available and emphasised the potential for career advancement,” Dalimfazwe said.  

However, getting accepted to study further was a challenge as he was met with financial constraints.  

“Furthering my studies meant paying hefty registration fees which was impossible at the time, once again, my dream of becoming a teacher almost became shattered. 

“But I never gave up hope. I was fortunate to receive a bursary that could pay for my registration and tuition fees. I believe my persistent spirit and sacrifices helped me overcome all these challenges. I also acknowledge that I wouldn’t have been able to achieve my goal of qualifying as a teacher if it wasn’t for my family and friends,” said Dalimfazwe. 

Upon completing his studies, Dalimfazwe was appointed as Blended Learning Facilitator where he oversees the culture and effectiveness of the Learning Lab, the school’s innovative computer lab. He works with all classes and individual scholars to provide academic interventions in maths literacy. 

He believes the guidance and mentorship of the leadership at SPARK Randpark Ridge played a pivotal role in shaping his educational path.

Dalimfazwe shares the following advice to anyone who is trying to achieve their goals in the face of seemingly insurmountable challenges:   


Take the time to reflect on your goals and the challenges you’re facing. Understand the root causes of your difficulties and be honest about what might be holding you back.  

Set clear and realistic goals:

Break down your larger career goals into smaller, more manageable tasks. This makes your objectives more achievable and allows you to track your progress.  

Prioritise and plan:

Identify the most critical tasks and prioritise them. Create a realistic and actionable plan to address each challenge systematically. This can help prevent feeling overwhelmed and make the process more manageable.  

Positive mindset:

Cultivate a positive mindset. Focus on your strengths and past achievements and use them as motivation. A positive outlook can help you navigate challenges with resilience.

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