A Saturday school run by ICT company Dimension Data was honoured by the Gauteng Department of Education yesterday after once again achieving a 100% pass rate in the matriculation examinations.
The Dimension Data Saturday School initiative is a two year programme that benefits 100 grade 11 and 12 pupils from 21 public high schools in Gauteng each year.
The learners in the programme come from schools in Alexandra, Diepsloot, Steeledale, Thokoza, Thembisa, Turffontein, Florida and Brixton. Learners in the programme attend additional classes in Mathematics, Physical Science, Life Sciences, English, Computer Studies and Life Skills. In addition, the grade 12 learners participate in the company’s work experience initiative where they learn about various career opportunities available at Dimension Data and are exposed to the ICT industry.
Established 19 years ago with just 15 pupils, the Dimension Data Saturday School has consistently achieved a 100 percent pass rate and has assisted hundreds of learners to achieve their dreams.
Top performer of the Dimension Data Saturday School class of 2013 was Cheri Favel who just missed out on a full house of nine distinctions by the slimmest of margins. She achieved seven distinctions in English, Afrikaans, Maths, Business Studies, History, Life Science and Life Orientation), but missed a further two distinctions for Maths Paper 3 and Physics by a mere one and two percent respectively.
Cheri, who was the 2013 Florida High School RCL President and Dux scholar, said the Dimension Data Saturday School had played a significant role in her outstanding results and in helping her win a bursary to study Chemical Engineering at the University of Pretoria.
Another star performer, Keegan Visser, surpassed his wildest expectations by achieving six distinctions in Maths, Physical Science, Life Science, Afrikaans, Geography and Life Orientation. The former Coronation High School learner, who lives in Troyville, Johannesburg, now hopes to study Actuarial Science at the University of Pretoria.
“Dimension Data’s Saturday School really helped me. I never missed a class and it taught me so much more than I was expecting, because I got to mix with people from different backgrounds and different schools. It was an amazing experience,” Keegan said.
Patience Zondo, who attended Florida High School, was thrilled with her five distinctions in Maths, Physical Science, Life Science, Geography and Life Orientation. “I couldn’t have done it without the Saturday School,” she said. She is also hoping to study Actuarial Science, but at Wits University.
The Saturday School is located at Dimension Data’s Bryanston head office and tuition is provided by subject experts and qualified educators, as well as Dimension Data employee volunteers.
In addition to working through the formal syllabus, the learners received leadership, entrepreneurship and social skills training, all aimed at preparing them for life beyond matric.
“Education is one of the greatest enablers for developing social and economic wellbeing. Dimension Data believes that every child has the right to quality education and should be afforded the opportunity to further their studies,” said Andile Ngcaba, Chairman, Dimension Data Middle East & Africa.
“For this reason, Dimension Data’s socio-economic development strategy centres on enhancing educational opportunities. Though our education initiatives, Dimension Data remains committed to helping young South Africans take active steps towards accelerating their ambitions and realising their dreams – unlocking future opportunities.
“We congratulate the Dimension Data Saturday School class of 2013 on their outstanding achievements, which are a just reward for the time and effort they have put in over the past two years,” he concluded.