Good Shepherd School – 2018 Highlights
2018 was an exciting and demanding year in the life of Good Shepherd School, as it was in the life of the Grahamstown community and of our beloved country. On the staffing front, the highlight of the year was, undoubtedly, the long-awaited appointment of the new Principal. The investment in academic excellence has paid off with demonstrable literacy advances in the Foundation Phase and academic performance of Good Shepherd learners in High School. The good news in this regard is profiled below. The School continues to be ensconced in networks of support and care that make it more than just a school. Leadership camps, outdoor education, cultural and sporting activities are a growing part of the lives of Good Shepherd learners. A brief Trustees’ Report concludes the Annual Report.
Acting Principal to New Principal
Ms Katie Appollis took on the Acting Principal role with trepidation and some reservations at the beginning of 2018. She had been looking forward to spending the last year of her illustrious teaching career (of over 40 years) in the classroom, teaching her precious Grade 2 learners. She is a passionate and outstanding teacher and it was a pity that the management role was beckoning in this, her last year of teaching before retirement. However, she took it on and did an admirable job under the circumstances. Ms Appollis was very relieved to hand over to Mr Manie Cronje as newly-appointed Principal on 10 September 2018 and to enjoy her final two Terms of teaching.
Mr Cronje hails originally from Hartenbos and has spent his entire teaching career at PJ Olivier School in Grahamstown, as teacher and then Deputy Head. He displays a type of leadership which Prof Van der Mescht espoused in his 2015 evaluation of Good Shepherd School: At almost every level, and at every stage of its remarkable history, the school and its community has been blessed with the vision and ‘practical’ leadership of people who seem to have placed its needs – and hence the educational, social and pastoral needs of the community – at the very top of their list of priorities.
The school foyer exudes spirituality and age; history, tradition, service and love of humanity. I am reminded: Good Shepherd School was started as a school for the poor, for orphans. It is more than a school. It is a home…