The Times Identifies the Challenge: Teach with Africa and the LEAP Schools have a Solution


Yesterday, the New York Times published an article, Eager Students Fall Prey to Apartheid’s Legacy, accompanied by a slide show entitled An Impoverished Education.

These stories give a regrettably accurate picture of an education system “haunted by apartheid.”  The system is cheating generations of South Africans of their basic right to the chance of a decent, dignified life.

LEAP students are strong, motivated, and full of hope

LEAP students: strong, motivated, full of hope

The time for hand-wringing, however, is long past.  Solutions are emerging.  Teach with Africa is a young organization.  But we are wise enough to have teamed up with the LEAP Schools in South Africa.  We are wise enough to do more listening than talking.

Based in Cape Town, LEAP Science and Maths Schools are community-based intervention schools for township students.  LEAP Schools are enabling learners to gain access to university through rigorous academic training and a values-focused life orientation program. Test scores confirm that we are on the right track (more about those scores in subsequent posts).  The social and psychological challenges remain immense.  But we are not stopping with the education of a few thousand students.  LEAP is at the forefront of a national movement to provide successful alternatives to the South Africa public school crisis– similar to our charter schools in the US.

Teach with Africa Fellows are assisting in South African classrooms

TWA fellows assist in South African classrooms

American educators are assisting through organizations like Teach with Africa.  If you are reading this blog, you probably know that we partner with U.S. universities and graduate schools to send educators to work in the LEAP Schools. Our goal is to help build the teaching corps in South Africa through an exchange of teaching and learning. By partnering internationally, many of us are working to provide hope for this “lost” but highly motivated generation of students.

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LEAP students will be contributing to these pages often

Oh, if you could meet these beautiful students.  And you will.  Here on the pages of this blog, and on our Facebook Page.

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