Curro Holdings, the South African JSE-listed independent education provider, has appointed JP le Roux as the Executive Head of its flagship technology-driven school, Curro Foreshore. Le Roux will take the helm effective January 2021. The appointment comes alongside the school undergoing a major revamp.
With a wealth of experience and a master’s degree in mathematics education, Le Roux was previously the head of mathematics and the deputy principal at Cedar House School in Cape Town. He is most looking forward to steering the school to even greater success.
Curro Foreshore was the first school in the group to adopt the DigiEd model, providing a progressive curriculum that focuses on mathematics, science, robotics and coding in addition to more traditional subjects.
“The DigiEd model is much more than just an innovative learning experience and we are committed to giving learners an edge in the world,” says Le Roux.
The growth of the school – from about 50 learners in January 2019, to more than 450 enrolled for 2021 – is testament to the success of the DigiEd model, and a growing demand for progressive schooling that will equip South Africa’s youth with the critical skills they will need to navigate the fourth industrial revolution.
Until recently, learners used computers on a shared rotation model at times, but in 2021, each child will have a dedicated computer to maximise both concentration and a sense of ownership. Parents are not required to shell out for a computer, however – the cost is built into the fee structure.
Ensuring each child has a dedicated desktop computer did mean redesigning and renovating the school. Instead of shepherding kids into traditional classrooms, the school more closely resembles a modern co-working space. As of 2021, learners at Curro Foreshore will be placed in specific learning pods, and will spend most of their day in these pods with their own computer.
A boon for parents is that the DigiEd model means no homework – and convenient drop-off and pick-up times – since the school day runs from 08:00 to 17:30. This allows learners to complete all their work at school, with access to their teachers if they encounter any challenges.
Classes are set up to be more flexible, since the DigiEd model has a more self-directed learning approach. Students log into an online learning platform where there are videos and other resources covering the topic under discussion, which they work through by themselves. However, they have constant access to teachers, who can assist with questions and ensure every learner understands the work.
“We have the opportunity to provide a safe, accessible and affordable learning space for all learners,” says Le Roux.
“Our school provides a quality learning environment that ignites creativity and imagination, and develops critical thinking and problem-solving skills, as well as out-of-the-box thinking.”