ArtWorks for Youth’s experience working with local schools in Port Elizabeth has been disappointing. There are so few options for out students in terms of where they will be educated, as decisions are made based on proximity and cost. Transport options are costly, so a school must be close enough to walk to (which is often an hour or more away.) While many schools were recently given a no-fee status, those township schools have among the lowest matriculation rates in the Eastern Cape.
When one factors in the lack of family support, our students have only our academic support program to look to for guidance about their future academic careers.
ArtWorks for Youth for Youth has two 9th grade students at The Ethembeni Enrichment Centre and both are the top learners in many of their classes. Ethembeni has received much attention because of its astounding 97% matriculation rate. Unlike many other local schools, teachers at Ethembeni are present every day and students are consistently challenged and supported. Ethembeni has proven that students from townships in Port Elizabeth are ale to achieve academic success, despite how students in other schools here fair. (Ethembeni is the school where many teachers in failing schools send their own children.)
Many of our students would thrive if given the opportunity to attend Ethembeni. It is our hope to enroll more AWFY students at Ethembeni this coming school year, (which begins in January, 2015.)