The Learner Development Programme

What Saturday School Means to Me

by Nosimo Vinqi (grade 11 student)

I'm hungry for knowledge, I need teaching
I need to pass. Saturday School is the key to my future
Luhlaza, Uxolo, Zola, Masiyile to name a few
Different schools, different cultures
We are all united in our urgent need for education
In Saturday school we communicate
We become friends, we share ideas
We are empowered.
Saturday School is the key to our future.

The Learner Development Programme (LDP) provides supplementary tuition for Grade 11 and 12 learners from historically disadvantaged schools in the Western Cape. The LDP offers supplementary tuition on Saturdays throughout the year at two different centres, the St Francis Educational Centre in Langa township and Mathew Goniwe Secondary School in Site B, Khayelitsha township. It also includes a Winter and Spring School during the school vacations.

The LDP's goals are to assist learners to:

  • achieve good matriculation results
  • achieve matriculation endorsement (needed for university entrance)
  • acquire skills which will make for success at tertiary levels of study
  • identify appropriate career paths and courses for further study
  • acquire appropriate life skills
  • acquire awareness of the issues surrounding the AIDS epidemic
  • explore options for financial aid for further studies

In 2004 the LDP registered 2,600 young people and continues to play a crucial role in the struggle by learners to gain the all-important matric certificate which determines whether or not they will be eligible for further study at tertiary level. Because of their often very difficult circumstances not all students are able to keep up regular attendance, but an analysis of the examination results shows the pass rate of learners who are able to regularly attend the LDP to be 71.6%, significantly higher than the pass rate of those who did not (28.7%).Learners at Saturday School, Langa TownshipLearners at Saturday School, Langa Township In no less than 18 townships schools, the learner achieving top marks in the matric examination in 2003 also attended the Programme.

It wasn't easy working every Saturday but it was worth it. I am grateful to ASSET for giving me the opportunity to pass because without the LDP many of us would not have made it. At school my Accounting teacher was often off sick and I wouldn't have covered the syllabus without the LDP. Thomas Mphako

The Saturday classes became a dream come true for me and for all of us. Without the classes we would have not passed Matric in this way. The Saturday teachers are there for us in a time when we need them and are very dedicated to improving our lives educationally. They do everything in their power so that we can make a better future for ourselves. Queenie Gomba, now an Environmental Health Student, Pentech, Cape Town