The value that Denel adds to education, especially in science and mathematics, was underlined by the achievements of matriculants who benefited from the enrichment programmes it offered over weekends and school holidays.
Two of the top achievers in Mpumalanga and the North West have participated in Denel’s Schools Outreach Programme where the focus is on additional teaching in mathematics, science and technology subjects.
“As South Africa’s leading defence and technology company Denel has a vested interest in the quality of high school education in the country,” says Zwelakhe Ntshepe, the CEO of Denel. “We work closely with the national and provincial departments of education to enhance teaching and we congratulate those learners who excelled in the 2017 end of year examinations.
Manelisi Silinda from the Steenbok High School close to the border with Mozambique was recognised as the top quintile one learner in the Mpumalanga province. He achieved distinctions in all his subjects, excelling in the Maths and Science subjects offered through the Denel programme.
In the North West, Koni Mwezi, from the Are-Fadimeheng High School in Klerksdorp was honoured as the province’s first in quintile three schools and he is also the recipient of OR Tambo Award. He is a top achiever in Physical Science and Life Sciences. He scored consistently over 90% in critical subjects during his last two years of schooling.
Ntshepe says the success of the programme demonstrates the contribution that state-owned companies such as Denel can make towards transformation, skills development and nation-building in South Africa.
“Denel is a valuable national asset that all South African can be proud of, not only because of our primary role in the defence and security-technology sectors, but also because of the impact we have on training and enterprise development.
“Through our initiatives in education we are helping to produce the next generation of leadership in the fields of science, engineering and technology,” he says. “This is a long-term investment in the country’s future and these learners will, eventually, be the architects of the country’s future growth.”
More than 160 matriculants from six provinces participated in the Denel Schools Outreach Programme (SOP) last year. Extra classes and additional tuition were offered during weekends and Denel worked closely with local teachers to improve the quality of teaching. More than 400 learners attended youth camps during holidays to brush up their skills closer to the end of the term.
The SOP is an initiative undertaken by Denel employees who give of their time and energy over weekends and holidays to enrich the lives of young learners. Many of the Denel employees come from disadvantaged backgrounds and give back to society through the teaching and mentoring of young learners.
The SOP forms part of Denel’s wider educational programmes which includes bursaries to students at various universities, internships at companies within the Denel group, mentorship for young leaders and ongoing career development programmes. The Denel Technical Academy at the Kempton Park campus is also recognised as one of the top training institutions for artisans across a number of technical disciplines.
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