Nelson Mandela University: Isuzu and Mandela University team up to help matrics ace maths

Isuzu Motors South Africa has teamed up with Mandela University’s MobiTutorZA Academy programme to help Grade 12s ace maths.

Sixty Grade 12 pupils at three Gqeberha schools have a chance of improving their maths marks, and their chances of getting into university – thanks to a generous donation by Isuzu, enabling an innovative maths programme to run at their schools.

The entire matric maths classes at Ethembeni Enrichment Centre, Paterson High and St Thomas High – along with an additional 15 past pupils outside of these schools who failed matric maths and are repeating the subject – now have access to Mandela University’s MobiTutorZA Academy, and the broad range of teaching and learning resources offered through its structured programme, which is available both online and offline.

These resources include technology-blended lessons linked to the Grade 12 curriculum, learner support in several different languages, mobile-based assessments, feedback via Zoom and many other tools, which have been tried and tested over the past 10 years by the university’s Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre – and have proven to help push learners’ marks up in provinces throughout the country, even over the past two COVID-affected years.

“The MobiTutorZA Academy programme integrates technology to support the teaching and learning of maths and is aimed at self-directed learning outside of school hours,” said GMMDC director Prof Werner Olivier. “It’s all about giving learners skills for the future and creating jobs for our young generation.”

“I’m so happy and excited that we’ve been given the chance to make use of all these wonderful resources,” said Paterson High matric pupil Dylan Mintoor. “Not a lot of schools have these opportunities … I’m also aware that we have a two-year gap in content [because of the COVID pandemic] and I know that with these resources, we will be able to fill those gaps and make everyone proud at the end of the year.”

“The programme will give us the tools to expand our knowledge, and to get the future we want, and the careers we are going for,” said St Thomas High’s Siphosethu Ncudu.

Mandlakazi Sigcawu, Isuzu Motors South Africa’s department executive of corporate and public affairs, said the company was excited to investing in the future of these learners.

“Investing in someone’s future is one of the greatest things you can do … We are also really happy to be able to give young people a second chance.

“South Africa is facing the challenge of unemployment, and there are a high number of people that are depressed, especially among the youth. So, I think it is important that we do afford [people] those second chances. And it’s great that there are skilled individuals, teachers, and professionals, willing to plough back into the community, by doing something great like this for students.”

Olivier said Isuzu had also supported GMMDC to pilot the MobiTutorZA Academy last year. “In the pilot, we saw more than 10% improvement in all the participants’ marks … We are thrilled that they are continuing their involvement with us.”