Simon's Town School Host Childrens Day

Children are the world’s most valuable resource and our best hope for the future. This is why Jean Human, principal of Simon’s Town School, and her Partner for Possibility decided to dedicate a weekend to celebrating the learners of Simon’s Town School.

 

Each partnership in the Partners for Possibility Programme is expected to host a community engagement event during the course of their one year collaboration. The aim of these events is to reach out to the community and get its members involved in the school.

For Jean and Kathy Florence, training administrator at SPAR Western Cape, National Children’s Day was the perfect opportunity. They planned two events: one on 1 June for the school’s learners, and a public event on 2 June.

This was the first time the school hosted an event of this nature, and according to Jean, it created an opportunity for the parents and the school governing body (SGB) to work together in a new way.

Many of the learners live far from the school, so teachers were previously reluctant to host this kind of event.

 

 

“The idea of spending time at school over the weekend was almost foreign to most educators and parents,” Jean says. But, she adds, the success of the event is “nothing short of a miracle.”

The struggle to be noticed and the complexities of peer pressure were squashed for a day, as exuberant learners stood unified through the lyrics of Michael Jackson’s We Are The World.

Learners and community members attending the event were spoilt for choice. A programme of dance, song and poetry was organised in the school hall, while soccer and netball matches were held outside. Jumping castles and food stalls were set up, and fruit and luxury packs were handed out to the learners.

 

According to Jean, the day’s festivities marked a historic moment in the life of this Simon’s Town School. “The children were blown away,” she said. “A large number of our learners come from impoverished communities and seldom get treated with luxuries. The memories of the day will be imprinted on the hearts of our learners and all involved for a long time to come.”

For Kathy, the warm-hearted thank you messages she received from teachers, parents and learners throughout the day made up for all the long hours of planning and commitment that went into ensuring the event was a success. “The day’s success was based on the collaboration of many teams, who worked tirelessly to make it possible and pleasant” she says.

“The Children’s Day celebration brought about very deep changes among the staff, learners and parents,” Jean says. “It was especially the usually undisciplined learners who shone on the day. The teachers now see them with new eyes.”

“I noted that a high level of acceptance between learner and educator had become apparent,” Kathy says. “Watching teachers play with their learners on the playground made this day a priceless and worthwhile experience.”

 

Chairperson of the school’s governing body, Shadrick Valaydum, could not agree more. “The celebration of National Children’s Day was by far one of the biggest highlights the school ever experienced,” he says. “The success of the event is attributed to a three phase partnership between Partners for Possibility, the SGB and management team, and the sponsors. A huge thank you goes out to Kathy and Jean for their invaluable participation.”


Jean explains that dealing with the school’s daily challenges had clouded her vision of what it is possible to accomplish. In retrospect, she is amazed at what she and Kathy achieved. “My partnership with Kathy and involvement in the PfP Programme paved the way for a bigger, better, brighter future for our children,” she says. “The call goes out to support groups like Partners for Possibility and organisations like Spar, not only to join hands, but to interlock arms for our children, our community and our lives.”

 

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30 November -1, 00:00
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