Basopa High School. Photo supplied/

By: Staff Reporter

Pupils at Basopa High School in Mhinga Village, Malamulele, kicked off the first day of the 2018 academic year by going digital.

This as Communications Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane donated 15 computers, a television and set-top box to the school.

“I came to not only donate these gadgets but to also encourage the learners on their first day of school. You [learners] must study hard and be focused because education unlocks opportunities,” said Minister Kubayi-Ngubane.

An elated Khensani Chauke from MhingaVille, who started her first day of school as a Grade 8 pupil at Basopa High, will benefit from the donations because she now has access to computers.

She said she looked forward to studying her favourite subject, History, at her new school.

Basopa High School Principal Elton Shivambu, boasted about his school which has an intake of over 1209 learners.

“In 2017, we obtained a matric pass rate of 82.9% and of those learners, 33 managed to get a bachelors pass,” said Shivambu.

The school received a 100 percent pass rate in Xitsonga, 90.9 percent pass rate in Mathematics and Physical Science and is one of the top performing schools in the Vhembe District.

Minister Kubayi-Ngubane told learners that she completed her matric while staying in a shack. This was proof that your background does not define your future.

“I had a child at 17 and I don’t encourage learners to follow in those footsteps because once you have a child in your youth, it limits your choices,” said Minister Kubayi-Ngubane.

She pleaded with those who already have children to continue with their studies and eligible matriculants to apply early to the National Student Funding Scheme (NSFAS) to study at a tertiary institution.

The Minister’s handover of a computer lab forms part of her Back to School campaign which aims to motivate learners to stay in school. The 15 computers were sponsored by Vodacom and Mustek.

As a parting shot to encourage the matric learners of 2018 to study hard, Minister Kubayi-Ngubane upped the stakes and challenged learners to get at least three distinctions.

She committed to paying the university fees of the learners who manage to obtain three distinctions in their final matric results.