Saica win­ter pro­grammes for bright pupils

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - MASABATA MKWANANZI @Sa­bie_M

“WHEN it comes to scarceskill pro­fes­sions like medicine, en­gi­neer­ing, ac­tu­ar­ial sci­ence and char­tered ac­coun­tancy, the pool of learn­ers who are aca­dem­i­cally tal­ented enough to ap­ply is a small one.

“The per­cent­age of those learn­ers who are black or coloured is even smaller.”

Th­ese were the words of Gugu Makhanya, a se­nior ex­ec­u­tive at the South African In­sti­tute of Char­tered Ac­coun­tants (Saica) ahead of the open­ing of the win­ter pro­grammes for ma­tric pupils.

More than 3 000 pupils who have shown an ap­ti­tude for math­e­mat­ics will soon spend their time ex­er­cis­ing their brains at devel­op­ment camps held by Saica around the coun­try.

Makhanya yes­ter­day said Saica sees it­self as a key stake­holder of the coun­try, one with a vested in­ter­est in im­prov­ing the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion, es­pe­cially in math­e­mat­ics.

Saica has been of­fer­ing ex­tra math­e­mat­ics lessons for the past 15 years to fi­nan­cially dis­ad­van­taged Grade 12 pupils.

Makhanya has col­lab­o­rated with key part­ners in the pro­vin­cial depart­ments of ed­u­ca­tion, mem­bers of the ac­count­ing pro­fes­sion, rep­re­sen­ta­tives from uni­ver­si­ties and in­sti­tu­tions such as the Fi­nan­cial Ser­vices Board as well as var­i­ous other pro­fes­sions.

“Saica’s aim is to help im­prove learner pro­fi­ciency in sub­jects like math­e­mat­ics and sci­ence in or­der to im­prove the qual­ity of pass rates in the coun­try”, Makhanya high­lighted.

“We also found that due to the mock ex­ams learn­ers who par­tic­i­pate in the camps have bet­ter ma­tric re­sults at the end of ex­ams later in the year.”

Makhanya also stated that the ev­i­dence was over­whelm­ing when look­ing at the ma­tric re­sults of the past year.

“Records re­veal that camp at­ten­dees are of­ten at the top of the ma­tric re­sults at the end of the year.”

Mma­phuthi Mak­gabo, who was one of the pupils who at­tended the Saica win­ter pro­grammes told The Star that he had learnt about the pro­gramme when his for­mer teacher gave him forms to ap­ply be­cause he’d been get­ting great re­sults.

“All the work­shops that Saica had last year re­ally helped me, as I re­ceived seven dis­tinc­tions, one for each of my sub­jects, and I also got in­vited to the Gaut­eng pro­vin­cial ma­tric awards,” he said.

He added that the ma­te­rial Saica pro­vided them with was es­pe­cially help­ful and he was also able to take it home af­ter the pro­gramme had ended.

Mak­gabo is now a first-year stu­dent at the Univer­sity of Wit­wa­ter­srand, where he is study­ing me­chan­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing. He is also a tu­tor for Grade 10 and ma­tric pupils at his pre­vi­ous school, Ivory Park Se­condary School.

Bu­sisiwe Sibiya, who also at­tended the pro­gramme in Mpumalanga Devel­op­ment Camp, achieved six dis­tinc­tions in her ma­tric fi­nals.

Look­ing at the re­sults of both Mak­gabo and Sibiya, Makhanya said they ex­pected sim­i­lar per­for­mance from this year’s in­take.

Each camp lasts five to seven days and pro­vides pupils with ex­tra lessons to im­prove their math­e­mat­ics, sci­ence, ac­count­ing and English ap­ti­tude. The pupils will also be of­fered life skills train­ing and ca­reer in­for­ma­tion to help them make wise and ap­pro­pri­ate ca­reer choices.

Aim is to help im­prove learner pro­fi­ciency in math­e­mat­ics

PIC­TURE: SUP­PLIED

PROUD ACHIEV­ERS: Ma­tric pupils at­tend­ing Saica win­ter pro­grammes at Thuthuka Devel­op­ment Camp in Joburg.

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