Nelson Mandela requested Oracle the multinational computer technology corporation to build a school in Kaalfontein. Oracle obliged and built the school in partnership with the government.
On the 7th of March 2007, the school was officially handed over to the community by the then Deputy Minister of Education Enver Surty, Gauteng MEC of Education and Social Services Angie Motshekga and the MD of Oracle South Africa Nicky Sheeidan .
Oracle International has a fruitful partnership with the school. Oracle sponsors ICT and best performing students are awarded bursaries to study at a tertiary institution of their choice every year. The class of 2019 was no different. 34 learners were awarded full bursaries by the tech company. The previous year in 2018, 18 learners were given bursaries and are currently studying in universities across the country.
Ponelopele Oracle Secondary School was the best performing school in KAE and surrounding areas. The school obtained an impressive 97,32% passrate. 127 Grade 12 learners were enrolled at the school last year. A total of 77 Bachelor passes were obtained meaning the learners who obtained Bachelor passes are eligible to study at Universities. In the class of 2019 only 3 learners failed while another 3 did not write the final examination. 1 of the best performing students of the school passed away before they could write the final examination. 1 learner who was a foreigner disappeared and another learner fell pregnant and the family refused for the learner to complete her matric.
The stellar performance of the school can be attributed to the Principal Mr. Edward “Nash” Netshianzwane. Principal Nash as he is fondly called by his students has more than 20 years teaching experience. He has taught at Masisebenze Comprehensive School in Ethafeni, Provident Academy, Blue Hills College, Thuto ke Maatla Comprehensive in Maokeng. From 2004 until 2010 he was the Mathematics Head of Department (HOD) at Ivory Park Secondary School. At the turn of the decade in 2011 Netshianzwane was appointed Deputy Principal in Kaalfontein Secondary until 2017. He has been the Principal of Ponelopele from 2017 to date.
KAE News had the opportunity to interview Nash as the Principal of the Best Performing School in our community. Asked how his school did it, the Principal put it to one thing. Discipline.
“At Oracle we ensure that we instill discipline in our learners from Grade 8. We find that parents do not instill morals in their children at home. We need to bridge that gap. Discipline is important in the academic performance of a child. We also ensure that learners take the correct streams of subject in Grade 10 depending on were their strengths are.” said the Principal. The school is doing a good job in instilling discipline. Learners from Oracle’s body language and dress code is different from the other schools. Wearing their red and white uniforms it’s clear that the children are disciplined. The school takes learners doing IsiZulu and Sepedi.
Since the school is sponsored by Oracle International it makes sense that children do subjects of the future. The Principal told us that they’re a handful of learners in Grade 10 and 11 who do coding and Robotics. The partnership with Oracle is valuable in the project of learning and teaching. When the school had a problem with electricity Oracle restored it. They are also plans underway to renovate the school this year. Furthermore, Oracle has also committed to donate new computers in February.
The demand for the school is high. This year 1350 learners have been enrolled while the actual capacity is less than 1000. The school has a staff compliment of 37. The Department of Education centralised late admissions for High School learners in KAE surrounding areas at the school’s hall. Parents had an expectation that their children would be enrolled at the school and were disappointed when this was not the case. This proves that the school is highly sought after.
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