Executives are invited to go back to school (and the principals office) for a day in October

As the inaugural Exec Back to School event in Johannesburg draws closer, PfP urges courageous, conscious leaders who care about education in South Africa to sign up for this one-of-a-kind, immersive leadership development experience.

Powered by Sphere Holdings and in collaboration with New York City’s Pencil NPC 'Principal for a Day' event, this experience aims to provide business leaders with an opportunity to gain first hand insight into the challenges of South African’s education system by allowing them to experience and sense the daily realities faced by their counterparts in schools.

As part of the offer of this unmissable experience, PfP has called on business leaders to participate in a three-hour preparation session 2-3 weeks before the visit to their chosen school. Participants are also urged to read the Art of Possibility and Partners for Possibility books, and to watch the South Africa: Alive with Possibility video, all of which will be gifted to them when they commit to participating.

The school visit will take place during normal school hours and participants will have the opportunity to spend at least four hours experiencing the realities within the school and engaging with the principal, staff and learners.  Thereafter, participants are encouraged to join the facilitated debrief session, which will present an opportunity to reflect and make sense of the experience.

Following the school visit, we encourage business leaders to consider hosting the principal at their offices to share his or her experience with their work colleagues.

The event will culminate in a celebration cocktail gathering, where the executives and the principals will have an opportunity to share stories of their day together and to enjoy an evening in the company of leaders from various sectors that they are not commonly exposed to. Gauteng MEC for Education, Panyaza Lesufi, will be sharing his thoughts about the event alongside other inspiring speakers.

In the spirit of generosity, leaders will be encouraged to share their thoughts and key take-ways widely within their networks. The Symphonia for South Africa team will also be available to discuss the experience and the potential for further involvement with schools through PfP.

A contribution of R8,000 per business leader is suggested to cover the direct costs associated with the event, provide a ‘gift of gratitude’ to participating schools, and to raise funds for the work of Symphonia for South Africa NPC. Section 18A certificates will be issued for contributions.

Should the experience generate further opportunities for business leaders to support the schools they have visited, this would be truly in line with the PfP ethos of ‘The Art of Possibility’.

Please express your intention to get involved by writing to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dates for the different segments of the experience:


Preparation for school visit    

Wednesday, 26 Sept 2018  

Visit school and de-briefing session 

Wednesday, 24 Oct 2018

Feedback and wrap-up event  

Thursday, 25 Oct 2018


30 November -1, 00:00