In September 2015, Team4Tech partnered with LEAP Science and Maths School 4 in the Diepsloot Township near Johannesburg. The project was to introduce educational software to teachers to engage their learners further. Recently, LEAP 4 grade 12 learners completed their end of year examination called matric. While the average matric pass rate in South Africa was 71 percent, LEAP 4 achieved a 94 percent pass rate. Although LEAP 4’s 2015 pass rate decreased by 1 percent from 2014’s, there was a 10 percent improvement on the quality of passes (Bachelors), enabling more LEAP 4 learners to access university. Here we share with you some of the inspiring stories of the recent LEAP 4 graduates.
Thwani is the eldest of four children. He grew up in Diepsloot and shares a two-room shack with his parents. Living in a crowded environment has made it difficult for him to focus on his studies, but Thwani has always worked hard and has achieved outstanding results throughout school.
His family situation was his motivation and source of inspiration, and the support he got from LEAP inspired him to work hard and fuelled his passion to succeed. In his matric exams, Thwani achieved 5 Distinctions and was accepted to study Computer Science at Wits University. When speaking about LEAP, Thwani said, “LEAP taught me about independence and how to work in a group. This will keep inspiring me during my studies at university.”
Kegomoditswe Maruping was born in Christiana, a small town in the North West province, and then moved to Diepsloot in 2001. When she was in fifth grade, her father suddenly passed away. Her mother worked as domestic worker to support the family. Despite their life changing drastically, she didn’t lose her motivation. Kegomoditswe said, “I am proud of my mother because she has been a pillar of strength since my father died.”
When Kegomoditswe was preparing for matric exams in June 2015, her house burnt down and she lost all of her clothes and books. However, her determination to change her family’s financial situation inspired her to succeed. She received 5 Distinctions on her matric and two universities accepted her: Wits University for Biomedical Engineering and University of Cape Town for Mechatronics. She decided to study at University of Cape Town and is very excited about her big move.
Cynthia grew up in Diepsloot. None of her extended family members have ever finished matric, yet Cynthia received 5 Distinctions! She attributes her success to her father who stood by her side to make sure her dream came true. Cynthia said, “In my previous school, there were too many students which made it very difficult for me to concentrate. But when I joined LEAP, I received all the attention and the support that a student needs to develop. I have been accepted to study Microbiology at University of Cape Town and am excited about moving to Cape Town. I am also pleased that my classmate, Kegomoditswe (above), will also be going to University of Cape Town”.
Congratulations to all of the LEAP 4 graduates and to LEAP for their ongoing work to expand educational opportunities for underserved learners!