We have survived another turbulent year in education – even though we were once again confronted by challenge upon challenge!

Although we had more teaching days than in 2020, the challenges facing teachers and students were abundant. Disruptions and panic resulted in all stakeholders having to be innovative and responsible – taking ownership of each challenge. Due to Covid-19 regulations, we regrettably had to either alternate classes for boys and girls, or for different grades. Although this assisted with discipline, learners only had roughly 50% of the scheduled contact time with teachers. However, our WhatsApp classes once again proved very successful, and in addition to this measure, extra afternoon teaching time as well as extra Saturday classes, enabled teachers and students to successfully continue with their academic programmes until normality was restored.

As was the case at the end of 2020, we again asked ourselves some very important questions: Is New Horizon the perfect school? Is this the school all children from surrounding areas and even other provinces wish to attend? The answers to these questions cannot be given as a clear “yes” or “no”. Rather than answering these questions, we should look at what New Horizon College offers to current and prospective students. Those who have attended over the past 26 years speak of the high standard in education, and also the well – balanced individuals we supply to the country.

We are very well known for our level of discipline, and we are often asked how we manage this achievement under such difficult circumstances. Well, placing a high premium on our values and insisting that our students maintain very high standards is the beginning of this success story. Our core values include Discipline, Respect, Accountability, Passion, Confidence, Success, Moral Values, Commitment, Perseverance, Strength and Courage.

If a student is prepared to live by these core values, he or she will be a model student,

highly ranked by staff, fellow students and the community.

So, what happens should a student not reach these high standards? Although we have a policy of zero tolerance in place, we are always prepared to view each case on merit. However, should we no longer see our way open to walk the walk with an individual, our ways will part. This is done to protect our image, our staff, learners and property – especially when considering our younger learners!

In January 2021 we welcomed various students and staff as “newcomers” to our establishment. To be honest, some of them are no longer here! Reasons why people depart vary widely, but it is often a forced situation brought about by financial changes within the family, as seen in 2020. Unfortunately there have been incidents when we had to terminate our contract and commitment to individuals and families. These were often linked to

bad behaviour and repetitive infringements of the code of conduct. However, despite these challenges, we have been fortunate to maintain similar numbers to 2020.

Our staff worked extremely hard to maintain a programme of teaching and learning via WhatsApp groups. Students had to adapt to this change as well, and in some cases, parents were forced to acquire technology to enable their children to stay adrift in the educational environment. Supportive families, dedicated teachers and motivated learners helped us to succeed!

Above all, we are grateful that we have not lost a single life amongst staff and students, although several of us were infected by the virus. Our thoughts and prayers are with those families who have lost loved ones.

We are extremely proud of our past successes in the National Matric Exam – highlighted below – and we remain confident that we will be able to deliver the same in 2021.

We salute all stakeholders (parents, children, teachers, the Education Department, transport operators, ground staff, hostel staff

and security) for keeping the ship afloat and ensuring that we will be here for decades to come!

When Covid-19 restrictions forced us to cancel all sport, we utilized the additional time available to us for quality teaching and learning. As soon as the opportunity presented itself, we resumed training. However, we kept it inside the schools, so as not to endanger our school community by possibly contracting the virus whilst participating in sport.

Due to Covid-19 our cultural participation was also handicapped, but we pushed through and delivered excellent results at the Harrismith Eisteddfod. Please consult the back pages of both the prospectus and the magazine to read about these achievements.

Parents, we congratulate you on making the correct decision in sending your child to New Horizon College. Thank you for accepting the challenge of assisting your child/ children on every possible level throughout this year. We trust that your child/children’ achievements this year will be a reflection of your passionate input in their lives amidst an International crises.

We all need to realise that Covid-19 has forever changed the face of education. It has unlocked the potential of e-learning, and this will never be reversed! You are encouraged to invest in technology for the benefit of your children.

Join us in taking up a positive attitude towards the future by supporting our every effort in guiding our learners through challenging situations such as subject choices, grade levels, technological advancements and emotional well-being – to ensure that we can uphold our current levels of academic achievement, discipline and moral values in years to come.

We wish the entire New Horizon Family a blessed Christmas and an extremely prosperous 2022! May the good Lord make all your dreams come true!

Management – New Horizon College