Walmer High School matric learners. Photo: Supplied

DURBAN – Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) continues to positively impact the nation’s education sector through various Socio-Economic Development (SED) initiatives. 

These initiatives have made a significant difference in the performance and infrastructure of underperforming schools in the Eastern Cape and Gauteng provinces.

Beneficiary schools of Airports Company South Africa’s educational support programmes achieved above 60 percent average for all matric learners this year. 

In Gauteng, Acsa enabled its beneficiary schools to achieve impressive performance results in 2018. Tsakane Extension 8 High School increased matric pass rate from 50 percent to 69 percent, whereas, KwaDukathole High School’s pass rate improved from 42 percent to 96 percent in 2018.

Walmer High School and Umtiza High School were the first beneficiaries of Acsa’s Learners and Teachers Development programme, which was launched in April 2017 in Port Elizabeth and East London, respectively. 

Inkomazi Secondary School science lab. Photo: Supplied

In 2018, Acsa said Gauteng-based Tsakane Extension 8 High School and KwaDukathole High School as beneficiaries of their programme.

Acsa’s funding support is focused on improving learner performance and the teaching skills of educators. 

The programme includes Saturday and holiday classes for learners in Grades 10, 11 and 12 for Mathematics, Physical Science and Accounting. Teachers are also trained on a quarterly basis.

Acsa group executive for corporate affairs, Refentse Shinners said: “Our socio-economic development programmes are providing educational support to ensure that schools surrounding our operations are equipped with the support they need to succeed in their school performance". 

Shinners added that they were very proud to see the improvement in the results of learners because this ultimately affects their employability and these Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (Stem) and Accounting subjects play an integral part in providing the skills necessary for a modern, thriving economy. 

Through its national SED Infrastructure project, the company continues to identify projects which seek to improve the overall quality of education, mainly in Stem subjects, in previously disadvantaged schools in South Africa. 

Over the next financial year, the company plans to provide classrooms, science laboratories, computer centres, staff rooms, a home economics kitchen and an Early Childhood Development Centre. These will be developed at Tsholomnqa High School and Walmer Primary School in the Eastern Cape, Kimberley Primary School in the Northern Cape, Tsakane Extension 8 High School in Gauteng and Metsing Early Childhood Development Centre in the Free State.

In line with the National Development Plan, Airports Company South Africa empowers its beneficiary schools to overcome various challenges such as poor performance, overcrowding, lack of infrastructure, poor sanitation, inadequate equipment and facilities, as well as limited exposure to ICT.

Inkomazi Secondary School science laboratory opening. Photo: Supplied