Newsletter 01/2017

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

New Staff

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.

IB Results

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:

IB 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 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

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

Any Questions?

If you have any questions and feedback, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line at 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.

Kind Regards

Stephen Lowry


Newsletter 37/2016

Happy Holidays

In the last half of 2015 we saw how many in Europe seemed to open their arms (and borders, community and Church Halls) to welcome and accommodate those fleeing the ongoing strife in the Middle east and in particular Syria as well as those from Africa attempting to get to Europe to start a new life. I did an assembly in September 2015 in which I lauded this tremendous outpouring of human solidarity with those caught in the midst of human depravity. At the end of this year, the pendulum seems to have started swinging in a different direction as we have seen the rise of more nationalist and perhaps even xenophobic reactions to minority groups in a number of countries. Many commentators have argued that both Brexit and the Trump victory are evidence of this nationalist reaction to increased immigration and integration in the UK and the USA. Marine le Pen in France is hoping to win the Presidential elections there next year, on a ticket of nationalist and racist exclusivity. Is our world going in a direction that is the complete antithesis of all that we at Waterford and the UWC stand for?

After the Trump victory in the States this is what my colleague head at UWC Robert Bosch (and predecessor here), Laurence Nodder had to say to his school community: “Waking up this morning, many of us are disturbed by the emerging outcome of the US elections. In my view these are deeply challenging times, even more so when considered alongside trends and developments in several parts of the world including in Europe. Looking ahead, we who have the privilege of a UWC education (either as students or as staff) have a great responsibility to go out into the wider world and not to retreat into small circles of like-minded people. Whatever our political views, we who have the privilege of getting to know closely and positively people who come from so many backgrounds have a responsibility. This is to live and work for a society that respects the dignity and worth of all people, for a society that is grounded in compassion, for a society that is committed to limiting its damaging effect on the environment. There is much work lying ahead. Let’s keep our courage and resolve.”

At our IB Graduation ceremony last Saturday I had a real sense of optimism for the world as I watched them in action and interacted with many of them on an individual basis. Our profession is one of hope and our school in partnership with our families is an incubator of a world where justice, peace, diversity and integration will reign supreme. A world where hopefully bigotry, racism and national exclusivity will be relegated to the proverbial dustbin of History.

As we enter this festive season, perhaps we can all remember this and rededicate ourselves to this different world. On that more serious note I wish all our families, fun, and friendship these holidays. I do hope our students rest properly (remember always to read) and that you all come back rearing to tackle 2017.

Staff departures

The following staff members will be leaving Waterford Kamhlaba. On behalf of the school, I would like to say farewell to them, and thank each one of them for their contribution to the school. Shepherd Magwegwe (Mathematics), Mona Hakimi (Anthropology, Theory of Knowledge and History), Annie Smythe (siSwati), Aissa Huysmans and Seipati Jonga (Advancement Office). We also thank Delaine Littler for her work as our temporary (maternity cover) receptionist over the past term.

Staff Retirements

Estelle Dlamini, (SiSwati) and Busie Nkambule (Housekeeping) both retire at the end of this year after many years of service. We thank them both for their incredible contribution to the whole school community.

Waterford celebrates Estelle Dlamini’s 36 years of service

Yesterday, at our End of Year assembly, we said goodbye to one of the school’s longest serving staff members, Estelle Dlamini who is taking retirement from her teaching career. Make Dlamini, as she is affectionately known in the school, has been working for Waterford Kamhlaba as a SiSwati teacher since January 1981. The assembly was attended by current staff, students, alumni and other guests including the Chair of the Governing Council, Dr. Mark Mills. Every speaker saluted Make Dlamini for her great service not only to Waterford but to the teaching profession as a whole. I thanked Make Dlamini for her contribution to the success of the school over the years. Make Dlamini has been an incredible asset to the school in many ways and we are really grateful for her contribution to Waterford Kamhlaba. Tributes were shared in the form of poems in SiSwati and English, modern dances by students, traditional dances by students, volunteers and the auxiliary staff. Make Dlamini will be farming and working on her book, Teaching SiSwati as a second language. We wish her well in her retirement.For more information about the event go to

PSA Thank You to Staff

Yesterday the PSA presented a gift to all the non-academic staff at Waterford in appreciation for their service to the school. This gesture was much appreciated by all the staff who work tirelessly, and often behind the scenes. I would like to thank the PSA for arranging this.

Payment of fees

You will notice that I have regularly appealed for parents / guardians to please settle their accounts. Recently we have even written to some individuals to exclude them from the graduation events due to outstanding accounts. This week we sent letters of demand to all who have more than E2,000 outstanding on their accounts. I have had some writing back and objecting to the tone of the letter. (The letter explains that unless the school receives payment within ten days, the student will not be allowed back at the start of next term.) I do apologise if anyone feels offended by receiving this letter, but could I appeal to all to make payments as required by the policy and contracted with you when you joined the school. The payment terms are as follows (Clause 9 of the Debtors policy):

• annually by the last working day of January; or

• monthly for 10 months (January to October), by the latest, 7th of every month for fees; or

• termly by the end of the first week of the term.

When we sent those letters out at the start of the week, the number of students with a balance owing above E2,000 is 309 (over half the school enrolment) and the amount is E6,675,138.09 (that is 10% of the entire income of the school for the year). There are a number whose balances are well above the E2,000 mark, but the overall balance owing makes it difficult to meet our obligations such as staff bonuses, textbook suppliers at the start of the new year and the bills of other creditors. It is also a large number of families for Ms Fraser to continue to follow up. Once again I am sorry if the tone was offensive, but please can I appeal to keep your account up to date.

School Report

Please remember that at the end of every term I publish a report about the school which can be found at the following link: It is substantially the same as my report to the Governing Council. It is published on the website in the interests of transparency. Please feel free to ask me any questions about it.

UWC Day 2017- April 8th, 2017

Fellow students! Both new and old, Link Group would like to remind you all to please bring traditional attire next term because we would like our annual UWC to be as colourful as possible and we know you would love to show off your cultural clothing so please do bring it. Thank you!

See you in 2017!

This is our last newsletter for 2016. We are grateful to all of you for staying in touch with us through the feedback, ideas and suggestions you have shared with me. Remember your views are always welcome. For now, we extend our warm festive wishes to all of you. Enjoy the holidays and stay safe on the roads!

Reminder: Important dates

Term 1, 2017

• 9 January: IB Residences open

• 11 January: IB1 Orientation begins

• 15 January: All residences open after lunch

• 15 January : Residential Orientation for new Form 1’s and 2’s

• 16 January: Forms Academic Orientation

• 24 February – 28 February (inclusive) Mid-term

• 8 April – UWC Day

Any Questions?

If you have any questions and feedback, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line at . 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.

Kind Regards

Stephen Lowry


Newsletter 36/2016

Food for Thought

Although the piece below is based on the US and one of its previous Presidents, I thought there is a lesson here for all of us about integrity. Harry Truman was a different kind of President. He probably made as many, or more important decisions regarding our nation’s history as any of the other 42 Presidents preceding him. However, a measure of his greatness may rest on what he did after he left the White House. The only asset he had when he died was the house he lived in, which was in Independence Missouri. His wife had inherited the house from her mother and father and other than their years in the White House, they lived their entire lives there. When he retired from office in 1952 his income was a U.S. Army pension reported to have been $13,507.72 a year. Congress, noting that he was paying for his stamps and personally licking them, granted him an ‘allowance’ and, later, a retroactive pension of $25,000 per year. After President Eisenhower was inaugurated, Harry and Bess drove home to Missouri by themselves. There was no Secret Service following them. When offered corporate positions at large salaries, he declined, stating, “You don’t want me. You want the office of the President, and that doesn’t belong to me. It belongs to the American people and it’s not for sale.” Even later, on May 6, 1971, when Congress was preparing to award him the Medal of Honor on his 87th birthday, he refused to accept it, writing, “I don’t consider that I have done anything which should be the reason for any award, Congressional or otherwise.” As president he paid for all of his own travel expenses and food. Modern politicians have found a new level of success in cashing in on the Presidency, resulting in untold wealth. Today, many in Congress also have found a way to become quite wealthy while enjoying the fruits of their offices. Political offices are now for sale.

IB2 Graduation

The graduation ceremony for the IB2 Graduating Class of 2016 is scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday 19 November 2016, at 17h30 at Esibayeni Lodge. Esibayeni Lodge is located near the Matsapha International Airport, off the main Mbabane highway. Further information is available at This year’s Graduating Class is a cohort of 113 students, representing 37 nationalities. Their graduation ceremony will include the presentation of certificates, an address by Dr. Mills, the Chair of the Governing Council, speeches, a variety of musical performances and a slideshow. The ceremony will be followed by dinner served around 19.30 and further entertainment. The full programme is available on the school website: We look forward to seeing the parents and guardians of the graduates. Please also take a look at our policy on graduation events at the following link:

Form 2 History Trip

On 1 November 2016, the Form 2 History students spent a day in Lobamba learning about nineteenth century Swazi history at the National Archives, the National Museum and the King Sobhuza II Memorial. At the archives, they attended an engaging lecture on how the Swazi nation was built by archivist Musa Simelane. Students had the opportunity to look at archival sources such as photographs and the original book in which Kings signed land concessions to the colonialists. At the National Museum, students were given a tour including a video on traditional Swazi marriage rites and a visual timeline of Swazi colonial history. At the King Sobhuza II Memorial, the students learnt about the King’s policies and historical impact on Swaziland today. Throughout the day, the students were active participants and asked pertinent questions, showing their interest in local history.

Form 1, 2 and 3 enrichment Week

The lower school will be involved in an enrichment week next week. The Form 3 students will depart for Berg Venture in the Drakensberg, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa early on Monday morning where they will be involved in activities until Thursday, returning to school at around lunch time. The Form 1’s and 2’s will be involved in various activities on and off campus. We wish our lower form students and the accompanying teachers a successful week of learning and fun.

Link Families

On Monday evening we held a cocktail event to say “Thank you” to our link families. The event was very well attended despite the very wet weather. These families are a crucial part of our pastoral care programme, giving our students a home away from home when hostel life gets too much. As I said in my words of welcome, we appreciate the kindness and generosity these families extend to our students and their contribution to the overall care and support is truly invaluable. If you are interested or know of anyone else who may be interested in becoming a link parent, please contact Mrs Mary Tinney on

Reminder: School Fees

We are fast approaching the end of the school year. Reports will be sent via email to parents and guardians. We do not like to withhold reports, however we are left with no alternative when fees for the year are still due. We do not carry arrears from this academic year into the next academic year so please ensure all arrears are cleared before the end of term so as to ensure reports are issued when we close. If you have any queries or concerns please call Tricia Fraser (24221639) or email, or call the Bursar (24221807) or email

Sports and Activities

Friday, November 18th, 2016

• Our swimming team departed for Mozambique at 1pm today (Friday 18 November) to participate in a swimming gala with AISM. They will return on Sunday evening. We wish them well and applaud them for their eagerness to participate despite the fact that they have not done much training at school. This is due to the water restrictions which were in place as we were unable to fill our swimming pool with water.

Saturday, November 19th, 2016

• WK will participate in Futsal at BOSCO skills center, leaving WK at 7:30am and returning at 6:00pm.

• WK will host an open soccer tournament starting at 9:00am and ending at approximately 4:00pm.

End of Term timeline

This is a reminder that as it is the end of term, in this coming week, we will switch the Wednesday and Thursday timetable. Therefore on Wednesday, classes will end at 4:00pm and on Thursday classes will end at 12:00 for an end of year assembly. There will be a short tutor meeting at the end of assembly and buses for day students will depart just after 1:00pm. The boarders are expected to clean their rooms and the communal areas of residences on Thursday afternoon and the buses to Johannesburg will depart early on Friday morning.

Reminder: Important dates

• 19 November: IB2 Graduation

• 24 November: Final Academic Day. School closes at 1pm

• 25 November: Buses depart from residences

Term 1, 2017

• 9 January: IB Residences open

• 11 January: IB1 Orientation begins

• 15 January: All residences open after lunch

• 15 January : Residential Orientation for new Form 1’s and 2’s

• 16 January: Forms Academic Orientation

• 24 February – 28 February (inclusive) Mid-term

Any Questions?

If you have any questions and feedback, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line at . 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.

Kind Regards

Stephen Lowry


Report back from the PSA meeting of 3rd October:

  1. The PSA has completed paying for the not-so-new cafeteria. The Parents and Staff has donated E94,000 toward this building project.

  2. The PSA Golf day was on the 6/11, a full report will be published soon. A full list of all the sponsors is below.

  3. The PSA handed gifts to the teaching staff on World Teachers Day, 5/10. Each teacher received a mug full of sweets.

  4. On Thursday 3/11, PSA members came to support the Girl Rising Week. The art exhibition was very impressive and the movie Girl Rising was very moving and interesting. Many thanks goes to the organisers of this important event.

  5. Next meeting Nov 7/11

PSA Organizes Successful Golf Day

The Parent Staff Association (PSA) held a successful golf day event at Nkonyeni Golf Estate on Sunday 6 November 2016. The event, sponsored by Capitol Caterers and other generous donors, was an amazing experience for golfers who enthusiastically moved from hole to hole. The funds raised at the golf day will be used to improve the experience of the WK community, in particular its students. Thanks to all our sponsors and to the team under the leadership of Wendy Green Thompson who organized the event.

Thank you to all of the following companies and individuals who helped sponsor the PSA Golf Day

Africa Power and comm

Capitol Caterers

City Office Machines



Dana tours

Elite Foods

Global Signs

Gomes Construction

Gone Rural

Harvey World Travel


Informatics Africa

Kiaat Trading


LTH Investments (Tokky Hou Sports)

Malandela’s Guest House

Mbabane Motors


Mogi Boutique Hotel



Ngwenya glass

Old Mutual

Pacific institute

Pretty Daya

Quazi Design


Pick n Pay

Parmalat- Pure Joy


PC Systems

Real Image




Stefanutti and Stocks

Swaziland Breast and Cervical Cancer Network

Swaziland Meat Wholesaler

Swaziland national housing board

Stephan Young and friends

Swaziland Railways

The Clinic Group

The De Graff Family

The Great Taipei

The Mathews Family

Times of Swaziland

Total Swaziland

Turbo Diesel


Waterford Kamhlaba

White Orchid

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