In February 2015, Tiisetso Leadership Foundation had a discussion with the principal of Mzinoni High School about the performance of the school. The performance of the grade 12 learners in 2014 was 42 % pass rate and this indicates a huge challenge in this school. One of the challenges that the school is facing is that learners are not performing well on English Subject which is a medium of instruction. This poses a challenge for learners to perform well due to lack of proper understanding and inability to express themselves eloquently and fluently in speaking and writing. This is not a challenge only at Mzinoni High School but in a number of other schools based in townships and villages.
In a number of township and village schools learners are faced with the challenge of swapping between the home Language and English. The learners who are proficient in both home language and English often outperform learners who are only proficient in their home language. It is a sad story to notice that a number of educators have to explain some subjects in home languages which make it difficult for learners to understand and answer questions when they are faced with examinations.
In addition to this challenge, township and village learners often do not have resources that can help learners to develop their vocabulary and to become proficient in English. Owing to their social circumstances learners do not have their own stationery and support study resources such as dictionaries and study guides.
In the light of this challenge, Tiisetso Leadership Foundation pioneered a Donate-A-Dictionary project aimed at collecting 1 000 dictionaries that will be donated to Mzinoni High School in Mpumalanga, Nobody High School in Limpopo and other schools will be added in the process.
The purpose of collecting dictionaries is to help learners to improve their vocabulary and understand explanations and definitions commonly used words. The dictionaries will be donated to the school so that they can always be available to the next cohort of Grade 12 learners each year.
Aims and Objectives Donate A Dictionary Project
- To help township and village learners to improve literacy and English proficiency.
- To help learners achieve their academic potential and have the same opportunities as their peers who are learning in first language.
- To mobilise potential stakeholders such as young professionals, universities, state owned enterprises and private companies for providing bursaries and careers information.
Dictionary Donation Request
In order to make this project a reality and contribute towards academic excellence of these future leaders Tiisetso Leadership Foundation request individuals and companies to donate either new or used dictionaries. The specific dictionary that has been identified as the suitable one is the Oxford South African Secondary School Dictionary.