Yethu Network of Schools

Your Yethu Stories

This is how champion teachers are helping learners return to school in 2022

Tefo Gaebetse and Frederick Ocansey — Champion Teachers in the Yethu network in the Northern Cape have prevented not one but four learners from dropping out of school since starting their Yethu Club in 2021. Yethu is guided by the principle that ‘zero dropout can be achieved if we act together’. Gaebetse and Ocansey have put […]

Posted on 4 March 2022


Champion Teachers and their 2022 resolutions: Getting the basics right

Dropout prevention has no silver bullets or a one-size-fits-all solution. Instead, preventing dropout requires that many role-players work together to create systems of support around our learners. While the burden of preventing dropout cannot fall on educators alone, they play a crucial role in preventing dropout. Their proximity to learners makes them well placed to […]

Posted on 17 February 2022


Individual actions add up: Champion Teachers have the power to prevent dropout

Tefo Gaebetse and Frederick Ocansey — Champion Teachers in the Yethu network — have supported two learners to return to class after starting their Yethu Club. School dropout is a complex issue with no easy fix. There are no silver bullets to complex problems, but individuals can make a difference when empowered with the right […]

Posted on 12 November 2021


Spotting the warning signs of disengagement: Champion Teachers are attentive and responsive to learners’ needs

Zandisiwe Cetywayo — a Champion Teacher in the Yethu network — is on the lookout for the warning signs of disengaged behaviour. Economic exclusion, exposure to violence and poor nutrition are some of the challenges of growing up in poverty in South Africa. The Covid-19 pandemic has deepened the vulnerability of many learners living in […]

Posted on 20 October 2021


Giving communities a voice: Yethu Clubs speak up

Siphamandla Ngwenya is rallying his community to improve school culture and reduce dropout. A child’s neighbourhood can significantly impact their school experience. In South Africa, it’s not unheard of that children would skip school because of crime, gangsterism or street protests in their neighbourhoods. Connecting with supportive community members can help build a sense of […]

Posted on 1 September 2021


Starting a Yethu Club: getting communities involved in preventing dropout

Tefo Gaebetse is part of the first cohort of Champion Teachers joining Yethu Network of Schools. Poverty and inequality are the underlying drivers of dropout and a child’s neighbourhood can significantly impact their experience of school. This is true for rural and urban communities, particularly where school dropout is normalised and becomes an intergenerational issue. […]

Posted on 26 August 2021


Rising to the challenge: teaching during a pandemic

Nomfundo Khambule is helping learners to feel safe, access a warm meal, and stay connected to school. Dropout is currently three times pre-pandemic levels, with the Covid-19 pandemic worsening the disruptions that would typically cause a learner to dropout.  When schools reopened after a protracted closure last year, many learners did not return to class. […]

Posted on 6 August 2021


Youth voices: this is how a champion teacher changed my life

The reality is that many learners can struggle for years to catch up with their peers. These learners often don’t have the foundational literacy and numeracy skills essential for academic success. Without the foundational reading skills to grasp the curriculum, many learners become disengaged and drop out before completing matric. In South Africa, eight out […]

Posted on 25 June 2021