The Development and Trialing of a University-School Partnership Model
Over the next few years, the SII will be exploring ways in which we can encourage community engagement that goes beyond the school and classroom. Our focus will be on the school as the core institution of community engagement and democratic development.
We want to forge strong and responsive university-school programmes. In doing this, we will draw inspiration from the success and experience of others. The United States’ university-assisted community school programmes, for example, are a case in point. American universities that serve as critical resources in support of the development of schools-in-community really illustrate how institutions like UCT can be partners for long-term, positive change in society. More importantly, they also testify to the way that universities can work in a successful partnership with local education authorities, in order to enhance the quality of education.
With the spotlight on Khayelitsha, it is important that we engage with a broad range of stakeholders at the community level. To this end, we have been holding discussions with community organisations that include the Khayelitsha Development Forum (KDF) and the Khayelitsha Education Forum (KEF).
Principles that Underpin a University-School Partnership Model
- A focus on the school as the core institution of community engagement and democratic development
- An “open doors” approach that implies more extensive use of school facilities – both before and after school, over weekends and during holidays
- A “beyond the school curriculum” agenda that serves the broader educational, social, health and recreational needs of the community
- A recognition that schools serve as sites for academically-based community service
- An encouragement for the development of strong and responsive community-academic partnerships
- A close partnership with local educational authorities to improve and enhance the quality of educational provision