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Automaker boosts Maths and Science capacity in schools

Home Business Management Education & Training Automaker boosts Maths and Science capacity in schools

ISUZU Motors South Africa is proud to announce the renewal of the partnership with Nelson Mandela University’s Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre (GMMDC) aimed at assisting disadvantaged schools in improving their Mathematics and Physical Sciences results. The new partnership is set to run from 2024 to 2026.

The official launch of this partnership took place on April 4, 2024, in Gqeberha, reaffirming Isuzu’s commitment to enhancing education in South Africa.

Isuzu has joined hands with GMMDC to provide innovative teaching and learning tools to three Gqeberha schools: KwaZakhele, Newell, and Sophakama High Schools. Through this collaboration, the programme aims to empower Mathematics and Physical Sciences teachers with the latest tools and mobile learning support platforms, including the GammaTutor mobile teaching device and curriculum-aligned MobiTutorZA software. These customised resources enable effective teaching and learning at schools without requiring an internet connection.

Lebogang Makoloi, Isuzu’s corporate and public affairs executive, emphasises the importance of integrating technology into teaching, recognising it as the future of learning. “Mathematics and Physical Sciences are critical subjects for graduates seeking employment in the automotive industry, and we are proud to partner with GMMDC on this project.”

The Mathematics Incubation and Techno-Blended Support (MITS) Programme, designed to bolster STEM skills development in project schools, encompasses three key components. Firstly, an intensive Mathematics and Coding incubation and skills development programme will target selected matric learners across three project schools. Led by school-based Mathematics teachers, this nine-month initiative will include twenty 90-minute Technology-assisted After-school Programme Support (TAPS) sessions annually, aligned with the school curriculum delivery sequence.

The second component will provide an opportunity for Mathematics Teachers to participate in a professional development programme accredited by the South African Council for Educators with the last component being a whole school STEM development programme for all grades which will be provided each year in the form of an online Mathematics and Physical Sciences learning platform.

“We are deliberate in the role we play in the education space. We pay particular attention to assisting schools and learners who come from disadvantaged communities. The partnership with GMMDC provides us with an opportunity to make a positive impact in the lives of learners, with the future in mind,” explains Makoloi.

Each session of the TAPS programme, organised as Topic Learning Cycles, aims to facilitate self-directed learning and will be preceded by a 30-minute Coding activity conducted by trained facilitators from the LEVA Foundation, a project partner to GMMDC. Mathematics facilitators will receive Gamma Tutor teaching resources and data projectors to enhance classroom presentations and teaching assistance during TAPS sessions.

The self-directed learning journey in Mathematics and Physical Sciences for learners across all three project schools will also receive robust support from the GMMDC’s cutting-edge online platform, MobiTutorZA.

Professor Werner Olivier, director at the Nelson Mandela Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre says, “The effortless incorporation of the latest technology into current support initiatives for Mathematics and Physical Sciences educators is worth noting. This programme aligns with the Curriculum Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS) for Mathematics Grades 8-12 and Physical Sciences Grades 10-12. Furthermore, innovative digital applications function as a supplementary after-hours support system, enriching students’ learning experiences.”

Secondly, Mathematics teachers from project schools will participate in the GMMDC’s accredited Professional Skills Development programme that is offered in the Metro. The third leg of the MITS programme will see after-school STEAM activity workshops being offered at schools to promote critical thinking and real-life problem-solving skills among learners.

As part of this partnership, 45 grade 12 learners will receive tablets and material resources for use in GMMDC’s Mathematics, Physical Sciences and Coding engagement projects, furthering the commitment to improve education outcomes in South Africa. In addition, each of the schools has received a projector, router and monthly data.

“It is the mission of GMMDC to develop and implement innovative techno-blended models to enhance the quality of teaching and learning in Mathematics and Physical Sciences in secondary schools and to improve critical skills for sustainable economic development,” adds Prof Olivier.

This sponsorship emphasises Isuzu’s dedication to supporting education and empowering future generations.

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