Welcome to 2017!
I would like to welcome our parents, new and returning students and members of staff. I trust that you all had a safe festive period and that it was a restful period. To our new parents and students, welcome to our growing community of diverse nationalities, cultures and families. We hope that you will also make us a part of your lives as we continue on this journey. We are honored by the trust you have placed on Waterford Kamhlaba to look after your children.
My key message to the school on opening the new academic year was how the idea of “deliberate diversity” was the foundation of all that we do at the school. That may sound a little strange for a school, where I suppose most would expect academic excellence to be the foundation for the life of a school. Well, yes academic excellence is possibly our most important aim, but how is this to be understood? You see, I believe that you cannot be an excellent institution, unless you are a diverse institution. More and more research is suggesting that homogenous institutions produce group-think, little creativity and challenge and in the end members of the institution who are condemned to following those around them and failing to meet the changing and challenging times we live in. Excellence can only be through diversity. Our children are growing up into an increasingly global and diverse world; a world in which your ability to relate to those of a different gender, race, linguistic or cultural group will determine your own success and impact as an adult in our world. If the school fails to prepare you for that reality the school fails you. Deliberate diversity, ensuring that the staff and student (and the therefore parent body) represents the diversity of our humanity is a central feature of Waterford as a school. It is at the heart of the DNA of the UWC from the inception of the first school in 1963 and central to the DNA of Waterford Kamhlaba at our founding in 1963 as a beacon of hope against the darkness of apartheid education across the border in South Africa.
It is my fervent wish that as we start the New Year, all our students will discover something more of their own humanity as they interact with, and celebrate those different to themselves. That combined with earnest academic endeavor will surely produce the results they want from this next year of their schooling. Good luck to all for the year ahead
I am pleased to introduce the new staff members who joined our team this term:
• Tessa Ware has a BA Honours Degree in Social Anthropology from Wits University. She has worked at the Regents International School in Thailand and has taught History in Nelspruit, South Africa. Tessa was also the recipient of the Mandela / Rhodes Scholarship in 2016. In addition, she is an accomplished musician. Tessa will be teaching History and Anthropology.
• Sifiso Mkhonta graduated from a local high school in the 1990s. He started off as a Civil Engineer after which he realized that teaching was a much better option! He completed his teacher training in 2014 and started teaching at Mbalenhle Private School in 2014. He is not entirely new to the school since he had a short stint here for six weeks as part of his training. He joins us with his wife and family. Sifiso will be teaching Mathematics.
• Nolwazi Ngwenyama graduated with an IB diploma from Waterford Kamhlaba in 2011 before she left for the US on a Shelby Davis Scholarship to pursue a Liberal Arts Degree at Bates College. She takes over from Aissa Huysmans in the Advancement Office in the role of Alumni Project Manager.
We have also been joined by a number of volunteers who will be with us for the first two terms of 2017 as they wait to go to University:
• James Bicamumpaka: Ecosystems and Renewable Energy department
• Lutfo Dludu: Advancement Office
• Nosipho Sibanda: General Assistant
• Sakhile Mayibongwe Tembe: General Assistant
• Sandzisile Mkhonta: General Assistant
• Sekelile Mkhabela: Teaching Assistant (Form 1)
• Siyethemba Dlamini: General assistant
• Ibrahim Ameen Al Hashimi: Teaching Assistant (Form 1)
• Kgomotso Magagula: General Assistant
Other staffing matters
• CAS Coordinator: The school is currently planning on extending CAS throughout the school, and we are hopeful that this will be in place by the end of the first term. We want it to be a central plank of our curriculum Mrs. Fiona Mills will take up this position on a full-time basis. She will also join the Central Management Group.
• CAS assistant: As a result of the above changes, the CAS programme needs more admin support and the school is therefore re-looking at job descriptions of all those involved in admin support, something which might lead to possible restructuring. This will most likely involve a new post. Ms.
Delaine Littler remains with the school in a temporary capacity for three months while we work on this. • Mrs. Paula Jacobs is back at the reception after the birth of her baby boy, Sloane, who was born on 14 September 2016.
Our Class of 2016 maintained the school’s impressive performance in their International Baccalaureate Diploma results. I congratulate the Class of 2016 and I would like to thank all the staff for contributing to these great results. All of the staff, whether we clean the floors, mow the lawns or teach the classes assist our students achieve their goals. Below is an overview of the results:
Entrance Testing in 2017 for Admission in 2018
Our entrance testing dates and venues are listed below. These dates and times are also available on our website at www.waterford.sz. Please register siblings and spread the word to families and friends. The dates are as follows:
• Saturday March 11th – 8am – WK Campus – for the Forms and IB (including all Swaziland National Committee applicants)
• Saturday March 18th – 8am – WK Campus – for the Forms only The Regional Entrance Testing takes place as follows:
• Saturday May 13th – 9am – Nairobi (Sarova Pan Afric), Dar (Protea Courtyard), Harare ( venue to be confirmed), Gaborone (Avani).
• Saturday June 10th – 9am – Maputo – (venue to be confirmed) Applicants residing beyond Swaziland can make appointments to test on campus on a mutually convenient weekday by contacting the Director of Admissions at email@example.com
Lost and Found Items
We have many expensive lost and found items from last year that have not been claimed. Please encourage your children to come and claim their items from the front office. All items not claimed will be donated to the Community Service Programme.
Weekend Sporting Activities
• Swimming Gala: This morning our junior and senior swimming teams, left for a swimming gala that will be held at the American International School of Johannesburg. The gala which will run from Friday to Sunday, involves teams from Zambia, Swaziland, Mozambique, Tanzania and South Africa. The swimmers will return on Sunday.
• Basketball and rugby: Next weekend our basketball and rugby teams, composed of under 16 and 19 (boys and girls) will leave for a tournament that will take place at the American International School of Johannesburg. The tournament involves teams from 6 countries. The school bus will leave on Thursday morning at 06:00 am and return on Sunday.
Reminder: Important dates
• 15 February – Form 1 Meet the Teachers (13:30)
• 24 February – 28 February (inclusive) Mid-term
• 11 March – Entrance Testing for the Forms and IB
• 18 March – Entrance Testing for the Forms only
• 8 April – UWC Day
• 13 April – School closes, buses depart for Johannesburg
If you have any questions and feedback, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org If the question is of broad interest I will publish the question (with the permission of the writer and without the name) and my reply in the newsletter.