Award for Bloekombos Secondary

Bloekombos Secondary School teachers with members of school choir. Back, from left, are Babalo Marhoqa, Dumani Mnyombolo, Cindy Franks, Feziwe Tshwayimba and Andile Mde. Front: Siyabulela Sulelo, Anovuyo Gwe, Emihle Madyosi, Ayakha Mziki and Phumla Mbambo.

Bloekombos Secondary School is celebrating a strong finish to the year after being crowned Best High School 2017 at the Tygerberg Heritage Festival last month.

The school offers a wide range of extra-mural activities, including various sports, drama, music and dancing, and Siyabulela Sulelo, a teacher and conductor of the school choir, believes that helped to give it the edge.

“We participate in everything. We ensure that every child is participating in one of the activities that we are doing.” He said the award had come as a surprise.

“This is major achievement for us, and we really appreciate it. It also boosts our spirits and makes us to want more.”

Principal Makhosini Maci said the school was determined to become a centre of excellence.

“And for us to fulfil our vision, we want to develop a child holistically. We don’t want to focus only on academics but also on extra-mural activities,” he said.

He said Bloekombos also had the advantage of being one of the most diverse schools in the province, with pupils from Angola, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, the DRC and Malawi.

Mr Maci said the school -which will have a staff complement of 50 teachers next year – was already planning how to improve its academic results for 2018.

For pupils to be able to take part in extra-mural activities, he said, it was important to have committed and enthusiastic staff who were willing to stay behind after school.

Tygerberg Heritage Festival executive director Kemi Adebayo said academic, arts and culture, sport, pastoral and community criteria had all been considered in choosing the top school.

“We have three nominees per category(14 categories in total) identified by the Tygerberg Heritage Festival planning team with a winner selected beforehand. On the Best High School award Bloekombos was competing with Settlers, in Bellville, and Elsies River. The awards recognise, celebrate and honour local business, organisations and citizens who have contributed positively to the Tygerberg area,” said Ms Adebayo.

The festival was started in 2013 to celebrate Tygerberg’s cultural diversity and promote racial reconciliation.

“The festival focuses on building bridges between local people, business and organisations irrespective of race, age, faith sexual orientation and social,educational, economic and cultural background. The core values guiding the festival are respect, love and integrity,” she said.