Durban — Star College Durban was among the top-performing schools in KwaZulu-Natal for the 2023 National Senior Certificate (NSC) exams.
Four pupils achieved nine distinctions and averaged at least 95% aggregate. Their challenges were overcoming load shedding, Covid-19 and the transition made from being in the classroom to online teaching.
For them, online learning was difficult at first, but once they adapted, they began to find it easy and comfortable. They all praised family and friends for providing a safe and helpful environment. They also shared similar plans to study medicine at the University of KwaZulu-Natal or UCT.
Sarah Chetty said online platforms provided by the school kept the syllabus going even during the floods, which closed the school temporarily.
Her mother, Sugenthrie Chetty, said she was proud of her daughter.
“We’ve always taught her to do her best. We’re happy for her success and we thank her school for the support.”
Paveshan Naidu said the class of 2024 should not forget to have fun and also work hard.
“Don’t stress a lot. Just study hard and enjoy. I will miss my friends as most of us will split to various universities. We might not see each other again.” His mother, Venusha Naidu, said it was a difficult year.
“I’m proud of him and all the effort he has put in. It’s been a stressful time for me as my eldest child matriculated the year before,” she said.
Yurav Hirachund said he would cherish all the interactions he had with teachers and classmates. He attended Star College from Grade R.
“I’m lost for words. I’ve been putting in the work from day one, but to know I did well is surreal. Consistency with school work and knowing what you have to do helped me overcome the challenges of Covid-19. Having a dedicated plan also played a role.”
Yurav said the matric year is a year full of pressure. He advised pupils to take a step back and look after their mental and physical well-being. He described matric as a mental game.
His mother, Vimla Hirachund, said: “He is such a hard worker and he’s been so consistent the whole year. My heart is overjoyed that he is reaping the benefits of this hard work. “With constant assessments all year, there was no time for other activities.”
Zachary Govender said he was confident he would do well because of all the hard work he had put in. He said the support he received from his family was key.
He also praised Star College staff for how they had adapted to various scenarios, from creating extra lessons to online classes. He said it made it easier and gave him a better understanding of his learning material.
“Consistency and discipline were the key so I was expecting to get a good number of distinctions and I’m glad it paid off. My family were big contributors to my success as they helped me throughout.”
Zachary said he would miss the people, including his friends, as they pushed each other competitively.
His dad, Michael Govender, said he did not have to push his son too hard as he had enough discipline and was able to balance academics with social life. He said this consistency has been present since primary school.
All four pupils advised the class of 2024 to be consistent and enjoy every moment, to relax and look after their well-being.
They also advised the pupils to ask for help when needed, as their teachers and peers would always be there for them.
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