Spes Bona High School, a public secondary school in Athlone, Cape Town, has increased its pass rate from 42.5% in the previous school year to an astounding 80%.
The principal of Spes Bona High School, Abdussamad Ahmed says a number of challenges contributed to the school low performance in 2017.
He explains that the school lacked leadership for a long time because the principal was on sick leave. The Department of Education then appointed Ahmed as acting principal.
We had a lot of challenges, learners were not motivated, parents did not attend meetings and learners were not coming for extra classes.— Abdussamad Ahmed, Spes Bona High School principal
I had to look for ways to turn things around.— Abdussamad Ahmed, Spes Bona High School principal
Ahmed says he had the learners sign a 'concern form' committing them to do homework and assignments. In addition, he had parents commit to assisting learners with their schoolwork as well being willing to attend meetings.
The first meeting with parents had 100% attendance.
We made it compulsory for the learners to attend the afternoon classes and if they don't I would call in the learner together with the parents.— Abdussamad Ahmed, principal of Spes Bona High School
To hear the rest of the conversation with principal Ahmed, listen below: