Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm Funds Maths and Science Development in Local High Schools

Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm is funding the extension of the Telematics Programme targeted at Grade 11 and 12 learners, to be run in partnership with the Western Cape Education Department, Stellenbosch University and the Eastern Cape Education Trust. The R285 000 contribution will cover the cost of installing this satellite broadcast technology into six high schools, situated in Jeffreys Bay, Humansdrop, Hankey and Patensie. “We would like to provide learners with the opportunity to improve their competency and aptitude in mathematics and science, so that they can progress higher in the education chain,” said Marion Green-Thompson, Economic Development Manager for Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm.

“Broadcasts certainly do not replace the teachers or what should be happening in class – it is simply an after school support programme, similar to extra tutorials to better equip learners, most of whom don’t have access to funds for additional tutoring,” continued Green-Thompson.

Some Eastern Cape high schools are part of a national network of schools that are benefiting from the afternoon satellite broadcasts of additional lessons that are made from the studio at Stellenbosch University’s Telematic Services. The extra classes are all arranged, scheduled and presented by the Western Cape Department of Education, in line with the country-wide curriculum. Learners are able to respond to or ask questions of the presenter in studio, via a web platform, with an SMS or a WhatsApp message. Through the web platform teachers can also download all the presentations and other resources. The Western Cape Education Department also provide workbooks that can be used during the broadcasts.

These direct and interactive satellite broadcasts are broadcast to approximately 66 Eastern Cape schools, 107 in the Northern Cape, 146 in the Western Cape and 5 in other provinces that require the installation of decoders and satellite dishes to be installed at the schools.

A monitoring and evaluation plan is part of this project, which helps Stellenbosch University thoroughly analyse learners’ marks, the schools’ context as well as feedback from the learners, teachers and principals about the impact of the programme.

Schools that have benefited include Lungisa Public School, Nico Malan High and Humansdorp SSS, Global Leadership Academy and Hankey High School. The second phase will include Patensie High School and the yet to be opened Jeffreys Bay Senior Secondary.