Principal Benny Maistry (dressed in brown suit) with parents outside the school. Picture: Supplied

Durban - Parents eager to have their children registered for Grade R next year, braved the winter chill on Sunday and Monday nights by camping outside sought after Hopeville Primary School in Phoenix. 

The school is known for producing excellent results in mathematics and science with principal Benny Maistry saying parents were willing to go to extreme measures to ensure their children receive quality education. 

"Parents are attracted to the school because the staff have created a good culture of learning," Maistry told POST yesterday when registration commenced. 

He said they offered a reading programme and another that promoted computer literacy. 

There is also a play centre with toys,  a television and a park-like atmosphere with a jungle gym, and bird cages created around the school. 

"Some Grade R pupils come from disadvantaged backgrounds and have never been to a park, played on a jungle gym or watched any of the popular Disney movies like their classmates. 

"By encompassing all these things, we are able to contribute to a child's holistic development." 

Maistry said circulars regarding admission were sent to parents at the end of June and by 11 am on Sunday, many arrived and camped overnight. 

Hopeville Primary can accommodate 105 pupils and the fees are R1 800 a year and include stationery and textbooks.

While they attract pupils from all over Phoenix, Maistry said they admitted pupils on a first-come-first-served basis.

Parent Dean Sivak, 34, of Southgate, said: "By around noon on Sunday, I was parent number six in the queue. 

"I slept in my car that night and returned home on Monday morning for a quick shower and change of clothes before heading back to the school." 

Sivak, who is self-employed, did the same on Monday night with registration for his son being finalised on Tuesday.
"I have heard from friends and family that Hopeville Primary is one of the best schools in Phoenix. This is why I want my son to attend the school." 

Another parent, Ramela Pillay, 37, a hair stylist from Mount Edgecombe, who also camped outside the school since Sunday, added: "Those
 two days were totally worth it. It is a small price to pay for my son's education and what he will get back in the long run."