Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Thandabantu Nhlapo welcomed about 150 learners to the Mathematics and Science Education Project (MSEP) Grade 12 Holiday School, which kicked off at UCT on 13 July.
"The fact that you are here means that the project is working," Nhlapo told the learners. "We hope that what you take out of this holiday school helps you to secure your place at UCT."
The MSEP is an inter-faculty outreach initiative, underpinned by an R18.5 million grant from the Royal Netherlands Embassy. The project aims to develop sustainable models of high-quality science and maths teaching and learning in five disadvantaged secondary schools in greater Cape Town.
The schools are Harry Gwala in Khayelitsha, Spine Road in Mitchell's Plain, Sophumelele in Philippi, Rhodes High in Lower Mowbray, and Thandokhulu in Mowbray.
Ending on 17 July, the holiday school programme includes maths and science lessons, as well as talks and presentations on university life. Master's students will share their experiences, and learners will receive study guidance and a guided tour of UCT.
The programme ends with an indoor soccer tournament and an interactive drumming session.
Addressing the learners, Ferial Parker, lifeskills education specialist in UCT's School of Education, noted that the transformation from high school to a tertiary institution can be stressful. "For some it can be quite a culture shock, especially when they hail from township areas, such as those in which the five MSEP schools are located.
"This is why the MSEP has brought you here: to experience life as a student for a week."
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