HeronBridge Training and Resource Centre

| November 10, 2010
By DAVID KLEIN

After much prayer and consideration, the HeronBridge training and Resource Centre (Ht&RC) was launched in 2010 with the full support of both HeronBridge Community Church and HeronBridge College.

The vision of this outreach programme is to “equip, empower and release teachers from disadvantaged communities into their God-given purpose and destiny through education and training”. To achieve this outcome, we needed to establish a training and learning facility that would provide for teacher training and incorporate an equipped resource centre to enhance trainees’ teaching  experience and ability. A facility was secured at HeronBridge College.

Putting it all in place

The month of February 2010 was spent preparing and equipping a cottage with lights, shelving and resources. Generous donations were received from HeronBridge Community Church, Ridgeway Ministries and The Mouse House Nursery School. We set up a committee to oversee the project, and Charm Laubscher took responsibility for running the Resource Centre, as well as providing ‘on-site’ support for the teachers in the community. She partners with Glynis Courtney (HeronBridge College Pre-Preparatory Head) and Megan Helsby, who both facilitate training and the provision of training material through their links with the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) and the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) School of Education. Both these institutions support the project as ‘silent’ partners, but give it the necessary credibility so that training and subsequent certifications are recognised and highly regarded in the wider education community.

An Orientation Day on 6 March 2010 was attended by applicants from surrounding disadvantaged communities – namely Diepsloot, Malatjie, Nooitgedacht and Rhenosterspruit. Twenty-five trainees were selected to commit to the initial 10 ACSI workshops and then move on to the Wits course material. The training programme will run in 18-month cycles. Three of the HT&RC trainees attended the ACSI Educators’ Conference in the Magaliesberg in June.

Training happens alongside community work

Training takes place on Tuesday mornings at HT&RC. On other weekday mornings, Laubscher is out in the community working alongside teachers in various circumstances to provide support in assimilating and applying the course material effectively. It has been most encouraging already to see significant
changes in so many schools. The training team is only too well aware of the many challenges faced by the teachers with whom they now work.

David Klein is Head of HeronBridge College

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Category: Making a difference, Summer 2010

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