STRONG PARTNERSHIPS BETWEEN TEACHERS, PUPILS AND PARENTS ARE A PRIORITY AT WATERFALL SCHOOLS
Waterfall Schools is the result of years of teaching in the Highway area, combined with brave new thinking, an independent educational pathway from 12 months to Grade 12 that incorporates Waterfall Pre- Primary, Waterfall Preparatory and Waterfall College.
Based on the iThemba Campus, just a stone’s throw from Cotswold Downs, Waterfall Schools is founded on Christian values and celebrates the God-given gifts of every person, from staff to students and parents. This is expressed in different ways through the phases, but always with a focus on creating age-appropriate structures to support and guide each child in their development.
The past four years have seen dramatic change on the iThemba Campus, with spacious classrooms, sports fields and a netball/basketball court being built. The Insele Trail provides a fantastic setting for early morning runs, MTB Club adventures and for lessons to come alive. Pre-Primary learners are also able to explore an interactive sensory path, complete with bird bath and worm farm.
The latest developments include eight new classrooms for the College and an expanded Media Centre. “God has blessed us beyond our imaginations and we believe that we have been called to use this to make an impact in children’s lives,” says College Principal Jeanette van der Merwe.
This growth would not have been possible without the schools’ partnership with Focus on iThemba, an NPO that promotes life-altering positive change in the Valley of 1 000 Hills through Early Childhood Development. This partnership has also seen 12 pupils join Waterfall Schools as part of the iThemba Scholars initiative, which provides donor-funded scholarships from Grade 000 to Matric to learners from partnering pre-schools in the Valley of 1 000 Hills who show the aptitude to flourish academically. “It has been wonderful to witness the growth of our youngest iThemba Scholars, and we look forward to welcoming more in 2021 and beyond,” says Pre-Primary Principal Paula Mason.
“Our school is a bright, creative space where we hear giggles, feel joy and see smiles. Teachers and staff are equipped to develop each little person’s confidence, concentration and age-appropriate life skills through play learning,” Mason continues. “The Tadpoles app is a vital tool in fostering meaningful communication between our staff and parents, who receive a detailed daily report and photos of their children’s activities.”
A strong partnership between teacher, pupil and parent is key to the child’s well-being and, therefore, their ability to learn and thrive. “At the Prep, we recognise the value of family time and are selective in what we add to our fixtures and events schedule,” says Preparatory Principal Brad Cooper. Homework is also kept to a minimum, with projects and revision largely completed during class time.
Prep pupils are exposed to a range of subjects, sports and extra murals, with the freedom to choose those that appeal to them most. Music and Drama teacher, Tessa Louw, has been thrilled by the commitment and creativity she has seen in her classroom and on the stage.
As one of the smallest high schools in the area, the College has made an impressive impact in its 16-year history. With a maximum of 48 students per grade there is time for personal attention, and communication with parents is a priority.
The College offers 16 IEB subjects, including Languages, Mathematics, the Sciences, Consumer Studies, Design, Drama, Accounting, Business Studies and EGD (Engineering Graphics and Design). “Experienced teachers who motivate students to achieve their personal best play a significant role in maintaining high academic standards, and we aim to continue our record of 100% IEB Matric pass,” says Vivienne Lamplough, College Head of Academics.
Teachers partner with parents to guide students in developing their sense of self, encouraging them to be calm under pressure, think creatively and draw on their faith to find strength. Service and leadership are key, giving our teens the opportunity to stretch themselves and connect with the wider community.
Waterfall Schools Grade R to 12 Open Day: Thursday February 13, 9am and 5pm
FOR MORE INFO
To find out more or to arrange a tour, call 031 710 1808 or email firstname.lastname@example.org; www.waterfallschools.co.za; iThemba Campus, 111 Ngwele Road, Hillcrest