Maths and science programme launched at Manzomthombo

Adhila Hamdulay, Engen Corporate Social investment (CSI) Manager, is pictured with Manzomthombo principal John Matihso, Khalid Latiff, Engen’s general manager for Corporate Strategy and Communication, and Unathi Magida, Transformation and Stakeholder Engagement Manager.
Khalid Latiff, Engen GM Corporate Strategy and Communication with Manzomthombo Principal, John Mathiso unveiling the new Engen Maths and Science Centre.
Manzomthombo pupils in their science lab

It was a memorable day at Manzomthombo Secondary School when Engen officially launched its second Engen Maths and Science School (EMSS) programme in the province last week .

The programme has been running for 33 years and strives to instil a learning environment that focuses on science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.

The programme is run on Saturdays and during school holidays, catering for 150 pupils from feeder secondary schools in Bardale, Mfuleni and Delft.

The first EMSS, based at CPUT, offers free supplementary maths, science and English tuition to underprivileged pupils in grades 10 to 12.

School principal John Matiso said the school was again reaping the benefits of quality learning courtesy of Engen.

In 2016, he said, Engen had made a multi-million rand donation to Manzomthombo, which enabled the school to build modern science and computer laboratories – and upgraded their technology classroom.

Through such interventions, he said, the school was able to to provide quality teaching and learning place for the pupils.

He said last year the school achieved a 96% pass rate in maths, adding that the school had always had more than 250 Grade 12 pupils and had always managed to achieve a 90% and above pass rate.

He believes that the benefits of learning in modern facilities, has resulted in a thriving academic environment and a proud record of academic excellence.

He said interventions such as the one they were celebrating, were critical in ensuring that township pupils received the very best education.

“We are very grateful to Engen for their continued support and are extremely excited to host Cape Town’s second Engen Maths and Science School. Our teachers and students are very proud of our quality learning environment, which enables students to thrive and excel.

“Our teachers strive to offer quality teaching and learning to around 1 638 learners and this is evident in the school matric pass rate in 2020 which was an impressive 90.1%.

“We want to make maths and science fashionable and also change this negative perception that these two subjects are difficult,” he said.

Mr Matiso said it was good see that private companies were putting money where it mattered the most and he urged others to do the same.

Engen managing director and CEO, Yusa’ Hassan, said they wanted to to empower pupils to reach their full potential in these fields and prepare them for the modern world.

Mr Hassan said their programme sought to harness the potential of talented young people in difficult circumstances and to contribute to the pool of scarce skills in our country.

Despite being situated in a disadvantaged community characterised by high unemployment and social challenges, he said the school had consistently defied the odds with excellent matric results.

“Not only is this school an inspiration, but a shining beacon of hope as its demographics speak closely to the skills development and social investment imperatives of Engen,” he said.

“With 100% of the learner population being from disadvantaged communities, this upliftment project remains true to the South African objective of elevating those in need.”

He said EMSS classes are currently held every Saturday at 10 locations across South Africa.