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Social Responsibility Senior School

Overview

The Social Responsibility Programme is based on putting Roedean’s core principles into practice. The critical analysis and thinking it promotes is part of a holisitic approach to education. This vision upholds the notion of responsible citizenship: one cannot exist in isolation from the community in which one finds oneself.

Vision and Aim

The community in which Roedean is located is diverse and dynamic, creating unique opportunities for pupils to engage with a variety of community-based organisations. Formal partnerships are nurtured with all the groups with whom the pupils interface, ensuring that there is joint ownership of the project outcomes.

Owing to the nature of social development in South Africa, many of the organisations assist and support orphans and vulnerable children. Such support has become a focal area of many of the projects.

Structures within the programme create opportunities for pupils to become part of a reciprocal learning-process through a commitment to the weekly and five-day residential projects with Phedisang in rural Limpopo and Nkobong Secondary School identified by in semi-rural North West province. Campaigns and drives are initiated by the Social Responsibility Board, which consists of elected pupils who are the social change agents within the student body.

Building the capacity of the pupils is paramount when one is striving for successful project-implementation. Therefore, training on the ethics of volunteering takes place, and emphasizes the value of integrity and respect. Social-responsibility initiatives develop pupils’ attitudes and values through direct experiences that deepen their understanding of the complexities that exist in a country, still in the process of transformation.

Senior School Weekly Projects

Each House has an allocated organisation with which it works, to enable ongoing relationships to be built. The focus is on developing the literacy and numeracy skills of the children who attend or who are resident at the various organisations in Roedean’s immediate community. They include: Nurturing Orphans with Aids for Humanity (NOAH), Jabulani Khakibos Kids Shelter, and Christchurch Christian Care Centre.

Nurturing Orphans with AIDs for Humanity (NOAH) www.noahorphans.org.za

Jabulani Khakibos Kids Shelter www.jabulanikhakiboskids.co.za

Christchurch Christian Care Centre www.5cees.co.za

Roedean School Projects

Roedean School (SA) in partnership with Nkodong High School enriching the Grade 9 Natural Science curriculum

Twinning and partnership as a vehicle for building school capacity: A partnership to equip pupils with Natural Science academic knowledge:

Roedean (SA) will implement a project aimed at enriching their pupils Natural Science academic knowledge and life experiences through the interaction and collective thinking with pupils from Nkobong High School in October 2011. The project will initially run over five days during the private schools’ mid-term break.

The project will include:

  • Material support (to be administered by Roedean);
  • Informal training of teachers in theme specific areas to enable them to provide the academic support to their pupils;
  • Coordination of future community- based activities.
  • The project is expected to reach a class of grade 9 pupils at Nkobong High School, 22 Roedean pupils and the Natural Science staff in both schools.
  • The project, which is viewed as a pilot will:
  • Enable grade 9 pupils to reach their full potential by providing them with enriching Natural Science materials;
  • Encourage pupils to recognise their shared values and concerns in the context of being a responsible citizen;
  • Establish community-based projects and coordinate structures to ensure sustainability;
  • Careful monitoring, evaluation and recording in order to facilitate replicability.

AND

Twinning and partnership as a vehicle for building school capacity: A partnership to enrich and equip teachers with academic knowledge:

Roedean School (SA) in partnership with Nkobong High School enriching the academic staff in the subject areas of Accountancy, Geography, Sciences and Math.

Nkobong Secondary School staff members resided at the Old Johannian Club and spent 3 days at Roedean, attending classes and meetig with the identified subject teachers to share resources and concerns with regards to the curriculum.

Roedean (SA) has the financial assistance/support from the Thuto Thebe Educational Fund (Royal Bafokeng initiative) towards costs of coordinating and implementing the five-day pilot project at nkobong Secondary School, and the three-day staff residential at Roedean which will be the platform to ensure a future for sustainable collaboration between the two schools.

Partnership with the Department of Education: Yeoville Community School Literacy Enrichment Project
Yeoville Community School (YCS) is a primary school (Grades 0 to 7) located at 66 Regent Street in Yeoville. It has 1 035 pupils, three classes of 40 – 42 pupils per grade. The school has been identified as being at risk in terms of results and is thus one of the schools targeted by the Gauteng Education Department’s Literacy Strategy.

Roedean School (SA) offered to assist in building and developing a literacy enrichment project within YCS, which was welcomed by the Principal and endorsed by the Department of Education. Roedean has been working in conjunction with the Gauteng Primary Language and Maths Strategy.

The Literacy Enrichment Project consists of three components: Paired and shared reading; establishing the school library; and preparing a group of children for the annual Phendulani Book Quiz.

The paired and shared reading project at YCS is known as The Link. Lynette Jackson a Roedean parent who is passionate and dedicated to making a profound and long term difference in the education of children who are at risk volunteered to coordinate this component of the project. The project is reliant on volunteers (parents, friends, aunts, uncles, grannies, grandpas and ‘old’ girls) who are trained using the Shine Model of paired and shared reading, find two and a half hours a week, during the Roedean School term to listen and guide the Grade 2 children in literacy development. Lynette and her team of volunteers have real life experience of the notion that ‘words can change worlds’.

The library will be ready by the end of October. Roedean girls together with YCS grade 7 pupils have volunteered on several afternoons and some Saturday mornings this year, to sort through old and donated books, cover books, fix shelves, glue in title cards and catalogue books. The Roedean senior school librarian has done training with the YCS staff on accessing the library to enrich curriculum content and has explained the importance of a library lesson to be time tabled into their 2013 time tables.

The Phedulani Book quiz involves a selected group of YCS pupils from grade 5, 6 and 7. Prior to the actual Phendulani Book Quiz; a regional quiz involving up to twelve schools, the YCS pupils are coached by the Roedean junior school librarian and pupils (Literacy Circle Group) and participate in a mock quiz. The Roedean pupils then attended the actual quiz to show support for ‘their’ team.

Phendulani 2012 – JHB round.

Yesterday, the 17th October, was the highlight for over 100 children from 10 schools around Jhb. The Phendulani literacy quiz had arrived. For months pupils from grades 6 or 7 had been reading a pile of 24 books in teams of 6, in preparation for the quiz.

The pupils came from as far as Lawley near Grasmere. Some were from Yeoville Community school. Others came from Vuleka Jellicoe and Vuleka Northriding. The Vuleka principal, Marlene Neaves, said there had been “Phendulani fever” for weeks at the school, as pupils prepared to test their knowledge of the books and their critical thinking skills.
Fifty questions were asked on the books which had been collated under themes of Survival, Romance, Visual lit, History and Fantasy.

There was tangible excitement in the Hall at St Martins, Dunkeld as the quiz mistress read out the answers. Marj Brown started this quiz five years ago as a “sister quiz” to the extremely challenging Kids Lit Quiz, which is international. Kids Lit Quiz is based on everything ever written for children in English. Phendulani is aimed at schools that do not have well stocked libraries or children who have been privileged to be surrounded by books since infancy.

Kids Lit Quiz ( KLQ) was introduced to SA by Brown 10 years ago and in the last two years the SA team had taken on some of the best readers from 7 countries in the world : Canada, USA, UK, Australia, China and New Zealand; South Africa won the world finals in 2011 and came second in 2012!

Now the academy of reading, Phendulani is preparing the poorly resourced schools to enter the big league – next year Vuleka will enter the Kids Lit Quiz, after winning Phendulani. The teams did well and the evaluation forms showed a range of likes and dislikes in terms of genre. There was no book that the pupils found overwhelmingly too difficult and they were very happy with the structure of the quiz as a whole. As a KLQ school, what Roedean did in advance of the Phendulani quiz, was have a mock quiz with the KLQ pupils discussing the books and asking questions with sweets as prizes. Lawley and YCS pupils that were preparing for the Phendulani quiz found this preparation very useful.
Well done to Vuleka on achieving first and second place and to YCS on third place.

Prof William Gumede, author of political commentaries and children’s author, spoke as guest speaker yesterday to the packed hall: he spoke of how his humble beginnings were affected by the day his friend took him to a mobile library and how this started his passion for books. The message was clear: take an interest in the world and cultures around you, be curious and read widely.

Brown, a teacher at Roedean school, believes literacy is the most powerful tool in building intelligence, democracy and tolerance. October 2012

Stop Hunger Now South Africa www.stophungernowsa.org

The Matrics of 2012 together with a team of girls from Roedean Brighton who were touring South Africa participated in a Stop Hunger Now South Africa meal packing event held in Founders Hall. Roedean Brighton and Interact were involved in raising funds for the event. The group packed 10 000 meals in 67 minutes in recognition of Mr Mandela’s birthday. Due to the success of the event Roedean Matrics of the future years will participate in this annual initiative.

The event was a highly engaging experience and contributed to building team spirit in the group. The event served as an important educational and social goal, connecting the resourced and under-resourced communities in South Africa, thereby fostering a greater awareness and encouraged participation in meeting the challenges endured by the hungry.

Women’s Day Walk www.facebook.com/lawyers againstabuse

Constitution Hill, in collaboration with Roedean School (SA) and the newly established NGO, Lawyers against Child Abuse (LvA) will be hosting a Women’s Day Walk on Thursday, 9 August, 2012. The walk will be taking place as a public statement against continued oppression of, and abuse inflicted on, women in our country.

The procession will depart from Roedean School (Princess of Wales Terrace & cnr. Carse O’ Gowrie) at 09:00 with the aim of arriving at the Constitutional Court at 10:00. The head girl of Roedean, Shelia Lubega, will hand over a memorandum of support to Professor Bonita Meyersfeld, Chairperson of Lawyer’s Against Abuse. Thereafter the walkers- Roedean pupils, staff members, parents, the founding member of LvA, and representatives of the legal fraternity- will congregate in the Women’s Jail for a participatory panel discussion. The event will end at 12:00.

In order to meet the outcomes of the walk, it has been decided to bring together a panel of experts in law, human rights, and gender issues to discuss and debate an issue that is pertinent to the pupils. So far, the following speakers have confirmed their participation: Justice Edwin Cameron of the Constitutional Court, Professor Mary Metcalfe, Education Department at Wits University, Advocate Gilbert Marcus, Senior School Counsel at the Johannesburg Bar, Professor Rachel Jewkes, Unit Head of MRC Gender & Health Research Unit, Phumzile Mthethwa, Gender Activist Lesbian Gay Equality Project and Lilian Chenwi, Professor of Law Wits Law School.

The objectives of the walk:

  • To further the education and the understanding of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights;
  • To encourage learners to take ownership of their rights and recognise the power of their own voices and choices;
  • To educate learners about gender-based violence and how to deal with instances of such violence;
  • To raise awareness of the levels of gender-based violence in South Africa;
  • To provide further information regarding Constitution Hill and the Constitutional Court; and
  • To promote their standing as land-mark sites and their role in South African history

We are extremely excited about this event, as it is the first collaboration of its kind. It promises to be an inspiring and informative morning which, no doubt, will have a powerful impact on the Roedean Community.

Over and above the day’s educational aspects, some of the Roedean School (SA) pupils have raised funds for LvA in order to assist them with providing direct legal services to their rapidly-growing list of adolescent clients.

Phedisang Residential Project www.phedisang.org

Phedišang, is an NGO in Limpopo Province that assists and cares for 540 orphans and vulnerable children. During the August school half term holidays (16-21 October) a selected group of Grade 11 pupils implement a project, depending on the needs of the organisation, at three of the Phedišang Aftercare Centers.

The Roedean volunteers with the Phedišang leaders implement the project. In the past projects have involved the paiting of early childhood development murals on the walls, planted trees donated by Food and Trees For Africa, designed wash stands (water stations) for hand washing pre meal times and developed educational games to compliment world maps painted on the walls by Peace Corps. The Roedean volunteers reside in the village, at the local mission for the six days.

UV Service Learning Project

The Grade 10 Life Orientation Curriculum Learning Outcome 2 states that the learner needs to identify a contemporary social or an environmental issue and participate in a group project to address this issue. For this reason, the Life Orientation Department and the Social Responsibility Programme have integrated their skills and content in providing the pupils with a holistic programme.

The emphasis of the project is on the pupils’ reflecting on self and on planning as a group what skills and knowledge they are able to offer the organisation. It is in this light that the project is designed and developed.

Roedean has established a Memorandum of Understanding with 28 different organisations that support this project. Pupils motivate for their choice of organization, after which a needs analysis is conducted to determine the content of the project to be implemented. The preparation for the two days of actual implementation involves the pupils’ learning the skill of project-development and project-process to achieve the projects final outcome. Every two weeks, pupils are expected to submit the relevant documents: interview schedules, minutes of meetings with the organisation, a proposal, and a budget are required by the task to make up their portfolio.

The length of the project extends over two terms. Input, feedback, and planning take place during the timetabled Social Responsibility period.

This project prepares pupils to be engaged citizens. Linking community service with the school curriculum enhances both character development and academic skills. Service learning can also go beyond these goals to prepare pupils to become engaged citizens by expanding their understanding of social problems and the role of civic action as a solution to these problems.

Annual Projects

Various projects are implemented throughout the year some of these include the following: Roedean Environmental Club building a permaculture food garden for one of our community partners, South African National Blood Service, a blood drive; Habitat for Humanity South Africa, a building project in Orange Farm, Phoenix project in collaboration with UNHCR and 10 other schools in Johannesburg to collect tins of food and plan an event for Youth Day.

Internal Social Responsibility Structures

Social Responsibility Period

In a timetabled social responsibility period senior school pupils work on projects in collaboration with various partners. The senior pupils created resource boxes in line with the early childhood development curriculum for the Flying Children, an early childhood development organisation based in Slovoville, on the west rand. Pupils have also participated in making sandwiches for the Yeoville Community School Feeding Scheme.

Constitution Hill and Lawyers against Abuse are our more recent partners and Roedean pupils will walk on Women’s Day and deliver a memorandum to a Justice of the court on gender-based violence which will be followed by a panel discussion in the Women’s Jail. Pupils are preparing for this walk through various presentations and the making of banners and posters. Past projects have included partnerships with some of the following NGOs; Soul City on the Soul Buddyz programme, The Electoral Institute of Southern Africa, Heartlines and South African Human Rights Commission.

Social Responsibility Board

An elected group of representatives (15 in total) from each class are responsible for in-house initiatives. Initiatives include commemorating important days i.e. Youth Day, Women’s Day, World Aids Day, Human Rights Day, Mandela Day etc. involving pupils in various activities at the school, and making one-off volunteering days available to the pupils.

Gallery

Human Rights Day Video