Today we are writing a new chapter in Hawston’s history

Joyful emotions ran high in Hawston on Thursday, 10 August, during the official handover ceremony of Hawston Primary School by the Deputy Minister of Basic Education, Enver Surty.

The school was built under the Accelerated Schools Infrastructure Delivery Initiative (ASIDI) of the national Department of Basic Education (DBE) at a cost of R64 million and boast a spacious hall with kitchen facility, woodwork room, computer laboratory, a library and multimedia room, as well as sports fields and an administration block.

This state-of-the-art facility is home to 1 147 learners, of which 120 are in Grade R, who will all receive quality education in a school that they and the community can be proud of.

The DBE remains committed to being the leaders in the delivery of infrastructure and related services that provides a safe and nurturing environment for all learners. To date, the ASIDI programme has completed 181 schools across the country; with the majority situated in the Eastern Cape.

Addressing the learners and parents, the Deputy Minister said, “This is a great day for Hawston and something you will never forget. It will be a story you will in all likelihood be able to pass on to your grandkids one day by saying, “I was here – I saw it all!”

In Afrikaans Surty concluded: “Dit is julle toekoms, respekteer dit en maak gebruik van geleenthede. Hier sit vandag baie mense wat baie opgeoffer het in die verlede vir ‘n beter toekoms. Moet dit nooit vergeet nie.” And remember, he concluded, “As ons goed kan lees, kan ons goed leer.”

Deputy Minister Surty appealed to the parents, community members and most importantly, teachers and learners to make Hawston Primary a success. “Make this school the centre of your community and ensure that it not only remains clean, but is safe from any form of vandalism and theft. I do not want to hear about drug abuse and violence and gangs in this school.”

Chairperson of the School’s Governing Body, Dean Martins, echoed the sentiments of the Deputy Minister, by saying: “The responsibility of making the school an even better success than in the past, falls on all of us here today. It is a fresh start, in a new school - let’s take ownership to ensure quality learning takes place and make sure our learners and educators are safe and secure.”

Overstrand Executive Mayor, Rudolph Smith (front left) pictured with Director of the Overberg Education District Bertram Loriston, Deputy Minister of Basic Education, Enver Surty (back) and Hawston Primary School principal Julius Swart with councillors Elnora Gillion (far right) and Valerie Pungupungu (front) at the handover ceremony of the school.

An inspired head master, principal Julius Swart said a new chapter in Hawston’s history has been written and he cannot be more proud.

“I am grateful for the patience shown by our teachers during this difficult period,” he said. “It was a big team effort and would not have been possible without the involvement of parents, learners and all other stakeholders who so willing availed their support and assistance in a climate of great positivity.”

Speaking at the handover ceremony, Executive Mayor Rudolph Smith said he has a long and proud history with the school.
He thanked the parents for sending the children to school in a clean and presentable state each day, regardless of any financial difficulties they may face. He appealed to parents to constantly talk to their children about what they do at school each day and to encourage them to do their homework and to study hard.

During his address, the mayor said there's nothing that he enjoys more than celebrating great achievements. “The schools in Hawston have produced a significant number of achievers over many years and we are looking forward to the new generation of achievers from this school – people who fulfil their role in the community and who become an asset to their work place and neighbourhood.

He concluded with the comment, “May these classrooms be filled with learning and happiness and the forging of life-long friends, and may God hold His hand henceforth on all who will journey through these fine halls.”


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