VALUES IN THE LEAD: EDUCATORS ARE THE PILLARS OF OUR SOCIETY, WHEN RECOGNISED THEY DEVELOP THE TENACITY OF OUR LEARNERS TO COMMIT TO THEIR EDUCATION

Over the years there has been a deep-seated sense of loss in the hearts of society and communities regarding how certain professions, previously viewed as vocations, have lost not only their appeal but their dignity and integrity. I dare say ‘ziya jika izinto’ (things are starting to change) and we at Valued Citizens Initiative are enthralled to be at the front line of that change through our Values in the Lead professional development programme.

This month we honoured, celebrated and rewarded 149 educators and School Management Team members from 25 public primary and high schools that have completed successfully this programme. Teachers are the backbone of our society, they not only teach and mould our children but they help groom and raise our leaders. Leadership is transferrable, and through this programme we assist educators to ignite and reignite their own leadership flames in order to awaken learners they encounter.

Read more: VALUES IN THE LEAD: EDUCATORS ARE THE PILLARS OF OUR SOCIETY, WHEN RECOGNISED THEY DEVELOP THE...

 

SCHOOLS, LIGHTS AND RIGHTS: YOU NEED AN ID TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS

Some of the ills within our education system are resolved simply by supplying learners 16 years and older with their democratic right to an identity document (ID) which is vital to their progress, careers and lives.

However, the awful truth in South Africa currently is that the number of children above the age of 16 years without an ID has multiplied. The Department of Home Affairs has simply not risen to the challenge to provide IDs to learners in poor communities since the smart card process.

Read more: SCHOOLS, LIGHTS AND RIGHTS: YOU NEED AN ID TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS

 

OUR VALUED YOUTH READY TO WRITE THEIR MATRIC, LEADING THEIR NOW TO REACH THEIR FUTURE CAREER DREAMS

On October 13th 2017, Tata Africa Holdings and Valued Citizens Initiative awarded 87 Grade 12 learners after they completed Bridging for Life, a two year leadership programme.

Selected because of their willpower to change their lives after writing a letter of motivation, 100 learners were taken through a journey of self-discovery. They learned to understand their DNA relating to their values, their strengths and weaknesses, and how better to manage their emotions and stand for what they believe in. They then learned soft skills such as self-management, self-leadership, communication, and emotional intelligence (EQ) through experiential learning.

Read more: OUR VALUED YOUTH READY TO WRITE THEIR MATRIC, LEADING THEIR NOW TO REACH THEIR FUTURE CAREER DREAMS

 

My Identity Document deepening my sense of Belonging



iVALUE Identity programme in support of “Schools Rights and Lights Campaign”, in partnership with La Voix de l’Enfant and Engie Foundation, is already enabling 2069 learners above 16 from 12 public high schools to get their Identity Document and become active citizens in Gauteng.

Currently, many school children above the age of 16 in South Africa still lack access to their vital life documents such as birth certificates, and Identity Document. As a result, our children lose their sense of identity and face tremendous difficulties when wanting to exercise their rights such as enrolment in schools, writing Matric examinations, right to vote and enjoy social benefits such as being able to purchase a cell phone, search and apply for employment and lead their lives. At Olievenhoutbosch Secondary School, the principal is grateful as she was used to have a tremendous drop out of learners just because they did not have access to this vital right to an Identity Document and some felt at risk as foreigners.

Read more: My Identity Document deepening my sense of Belonging

 

My South Africa!

“My experience today was to touch a white person, speak to an Indian: May this day never end!” said Mpanza Siphokuhle from Tshana High School.

To many, this might come as a shock, shameful and thought provoking. But to Mpanza and 107 fellow learners from 5 public high schools from Mandeni Circuit, KwaZulu-Natal Province this states their need as the youth of South Africa to develop public space where South Africans develop a common language, make a collective contribution to understand one another and build a collective meaning about our Rainbow Nation.

Read more: My South Africa!

 

iVALUE, entrepreneurship skills and experimental learning – a two year investment for growth in a medium term



iVALUE is a two year programme provided to 30 grade 10 learners selected for their zest for entrepreneurship from selected public high schools in Gauteng Province. Personal and collective responsibility, leadership skills and entrepreneurship skills are part of the curriculum we facilitate in 72 hours through creative and experiential learning. This year, iVALUE is currently benefiting 60 learners from two public high schools, namely: Forte Secondary School in Dobsonville and Kwena-Molapo High School in Lanseria, thanks to Strate investing for the third year in iVALUE to ensure that in the medium to long term we create 20% of entrepreneurs which are not just sustaining a family but creating jobs.

Read more: iVALUE, entrepreneurship skills and experimental learning – a two year investment for growth in a...

 

iNSPIRE, powering girl learners to lead their lives



From the 16th to the 20th of May 2016 Valued Citizens Initiative conducted monitoring and evaluation in 10 public high schools that benefited from the iNSPIRE programme in 2013, in Uthungulu District - KwaZulu Natal. The process was to engage all stakeholder’s in interviews assessing their portfolios and evaluating the impact of this leadership programme at individual and collective levels in schools.

According to the Kwa-Zulu Natal Department of Education: “Many adolescents are vulnerable to sexual exploitation and HIV and AIDS infections due to unusually high levels of poverty. The problem is further exacerbated by limited knowledge of sexual reproductive health (SRH), rendering adolescents vulnerable to making unhealthy lifestyle choices.”.

Read more: iNSPIRE, powering girl learners to lead their lives

 

SONDELA – From Economic Turmoil to Accountability, our Valued Citizens Learners propose solutions to government!

Grade 9-11 learners participating in the Sondela Dialogue programme supported by the National Department of Arts and Culture and the Gauteng Speaker’s Forum were anxiously awaiting the upcoming Budget Speech by Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan, following the State of the Nation Address by President Jacob Zuma and the economic turmoil South Africa faces.

Our 178 Valued Citizens learners from Westonaria, Olivenhoutbosch, Forte, TM Letlhake, Randfontein High schools have been vibrant during the Sondela Dialogues raising their concerns about corruption paralysing our country. Our learners engaged – “As citizens we are not victims, we should stop echoing one another, and rather be the voice taking responsibility for our words and actions!” stated learners from Forte and Randfontein High Schools.

Read more: SONDELA – From Economic Turmoil to Accountability, our Valued Citizens Learners propose solutions...

 

Talk Shop on SFAM



Valued Citizens Masilo Bopape and Lethabo Tau from Forte High School, and Obakeng Seageng with his teacher Jason Fisher from Randfontein High School, felt heard on the Talk Shop led by Naledi on SFAM on the 9th of March 2016, reporting on the Sondela Dialogues.

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Values in the Lead… Looking within first!

In Ilembe, Amajuba and Ulundi in KwaZulu-Natal, and West Coast in Western Cape, our School Management Teams have agreed that their school’s vision and mission are very often dated, and not known by all stakeholders. The focus is on Excellence in Education but not defining it. Firstly, they had to reflect on the meaning of key words forming part of their vision. It was noticed how the articulation of the school’s vision is essential as it makes a school unique, strengthen the values we wish to internalise and experience through behaviour from our teachers, learners and parents and it should form the spine of how we deliver teaching and facilitate learning.

Read more: Values in the Lead… Looking within first!

 

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