There was great excitement and razzmatazz at TEM Mrwetyana High School last week as the SABC and Umhlobo Wenene visited the school to do live radio broadcasts and record the hand-over of 1 000 books to the school’s library.
There was great excitement and razzmatazz at TEM Mrwetyana High School last week as the SABC and Umhlobo Wenene visited the school to do live radio broadcasts and record the hand-over of 1 000 books to the school’s library. This largesse stemmed from a corporate social investment initiative of the SABC to partner with broadcasters around the country and commemorate Youth Day in a significant way.
It is the first time that Eastern Cape schools will benefit from these initiatives of the SABC, and TEM Mrwetyana is the only school to have been selected in Grahamstown. Other objectives of the project are to encourage a culture of reading among black youth of all ages, as well as to equip previously disadvantaged schools with the necessary reading material to foster their development and ensure their success. According to the principal of the school, Lindelo Ramokolo, the SABC did their own research into schools in Grahamstown and selected Mrwetyana on the basis of criteria including its matric results, how the teaching and learning programme is organised and governance structures.
The hand-over last Wednesday was attended by the top management of the SABC in the Eastern Cape, as well as the station manager for Umhlobo Wenene and other station staff, representatives from the local Dept of Education, Makana Municipality, parents, teachers and pupils. Footage of the event was broadcast on SABC1 the same day and on Morning Live the next day.
The large new collection of books is currently being stored in the school’s media centre, but will be moved to the designated library as soon as an alarm system has been installed. There, teacher-librarian Thembela Lamani will preside over the accessing and exchanging of books, once they have all been catalogued on to the computer system. Lamani is ordinarily an Economics teacher, but is very keen to get the pupils reading and using the library in a number of ways, so has taken on this task in addition to her normal teaching load.
“We are very excited. It’s really going to make a big difference,” said Ramokolo and Lamani. They pointed out that although Duna Library is situated in their community, it does not always have the necessary resources to cater for the needs of their pupils. “These reference books cover all the high school subjects, especially history, and will be an invaluable resource for our pupils in doing research and school projects.”