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Michaelhouse trust backed Eduhelper programme grows

Assistant teachers boost Midlands partnership schools

Eduhelpers at the Michaelhouse Heritage Centre. Picture: Rector's e-newsletter

Most South African government no-fee schools face numerous serious challenges emanating from complex social issues. To make a difference, a number of interventions need to be implemented, one of which is funding and training to boost teachers and assistant teachers.

This can be in the form of skills transfer, instilling confidence or specific expertise training.

All the challenges the schools face cannot be tackled alone and Michaelhouse, through its Community Partnership Trust (CPT), has sought the help of a variety of corporations to assist in the task, as it works with local partnership schools.

“In the KZN Midlands there are many non-profit organisations which work with schools to support education and we are linked to them in our efforts to improve the situation. The Michaelhouse Community Partnership Trust (CPT) is one of these NPOs, working in no-fee schools,” says Amy Webster, Michaelhouse Community Partnership Trust manager.

Interventions have been designed to create changes that are effective, sustainable and beneficial to partnership schools while attempting to address unemployment, overcrowded classrooms, teacher capacity and educational standards.

A Partners for Possibility event at Michaelhouse. This programme pairs principals of schools with business leaders, and they work together to tackle issues at schools and drive improvements to benefit the school environment, infrastructure, staff and pupils. Picture: Garth Johnstone

Midlands schools partnerships flourish in Partners for Possibility programme

“In this regard, the Eduhelper programme which effectively employs teaching assistants, was launched in 2018 with one passionate Eduhelper in one school. This year the CPT has supported nine Eduhelpers in five schools, demonstrating a growth in our commitment to the improvement of the schools. The Covid-19 pandemic has, naturally, impacted on our ability to support the Eduhelpers, but we are making good progress.”

The future looks bright for the programme. The trust aims to further expand the Eduhelper Project next year, said Webster, when it aims to reach 10 schools and support 15 Eduhelpers.

“The CPT team manages this project which is fully dependent on external funding, mainly through corporate social investment.”

**Source: Michaelhouse Rector’s e-newsletter

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