At the time of placement few of our newly admitted boys are ready to be placed directly into the formal school system. They have often dropped out of school, not necessarily due to lack of potential, but because of their inability to bridge the huge academic and cognitive gaps without the help they need. Along with these academic challenges come physical and emotional challenges which form additional barriers to learning. This means that the boys are often much older yet less able to cope than their school going peers and this leads to high levels of frustration for both the child and the educators. The boys therefore need to receive bridging and/or remedial education on an individually appropriate level, allowing them to master the foundational skills needed to progress at school.
There was thus an urgent need for an effective alternative which addresses the root of the problem and enables the boys to become school ready before an attempt is made to place them in a formal school. The Strong Foundations School programme was launched during January 2014 and has since grown in its policies and procedures, as well as add-on support services.
About the Strong Foundations Programme
- On admission to Khayalethu, boys are assessed and enrolled for the Programme in line with their IDPs ( Individual Development Plans).
- The Programme follows the CAPS Curriculum (currently used in the South African school system).
- The Programme can be accelerated according to the boys’ ability, with the aim of placing each boy successfully in a formal school. This process could take up to 2 years.
- The classes are kept small, with an initial group of up to 10 learners.
- The Programme aims to encourage self discipline, punctuality, neatness, personal hygiene, communication skills, foundational academic skills in literacy, numeracy, computer skills, reading and comprehension, and creative arts to address challenges and remediate as far as possible.
- The Programme aims to assess the boys regularly to allow them to progress through the different levels towards the 2 year goal of placement within a suitable formal school.
The learners within this programme are taught by a qualified teacher (Mrs Sue Grant). They go on regular school outings and trips, receive weekly group counselling (UCLIN) robotics classes (Mrs Natasha Saunders).
The ACVV Khayalethu Child and Youth Care Centre and Oliver House is a registered as a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) with the South African Revenue Service – PBO Reg. No. 93 000 6889 – and also as a Non Profit Organisation – NPO 199-436.