As part of my “Paying it Forward” vibe I also thought it would be a good idea to be more involved with activities going on The Tribes schools. So I volunteered myself to be a Room Parent as Ella’s school, Sun Valley Primary School (SVPS).
I didn’t know exactly what this would entail but I signed up, went to the training & had my first Room Parent session on Monday. I was interested to find out how this all started. There was an elderly lady who lived in the Sun Valley community. She filled her week up with volunteering to different organisations. She arrived at SVPS, knocked on the door of a classroom and told the teacher she had a Thursday free in her week, could she help out? This was many years ago and so the Room Parenting program started. Parents give up of their time in the week and spend it assisting the teacher of your child. It could be anything from reading , doing maths etc with a small group in the class. Albeit only an hour you give up the teachers are very grateful for the assistance. I was impressed to hear that out of a class of 30 the one teacher had 17 Room Parents.
This got me thinking as to what a fantastic school SVPS is. My whole mindset on schools has changed since moving to Cape-Town. When we lived in East London there were only 2 schools in my mind, Clarendon & Selborne, THE END. It was not negotiable for me and I would argued the point that my children would go to the best school (in my mind anyway) and that was that.
We stumbled over SVPS by default. Everything was a rush when moving to CPT. I wanted the girls to go to Wynberg Girls (in my mind the best option) but Wynberg Girls would not even give us an application form until we had proof of residence. We finally found a place to stay and SVPS was a stone throw away so we went and checked it out for Ella. I wasn’t jumping through hoops when I first went there but we applied with the thought that I could always look for something else. As it turns out SVPS is just the perfect fit for Ella. The principal, Mr Keller, is well respected and very forward thinking. The children go to school in shorts, golf shirts and slops/barefoot. Ella is as happy as Larry at SVPS.
This has changed my idea of schools A LOT! The expensive, posh, traditional school is great but not great for all. I think the child should be matched to school. That is a statement you would not have heard from me 3 years ago 🙂