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High schools in South Africa have become very competitive, as many prospective students are looking for the best schools where they can get an all-rounded education as well as the best results. This is a list of the most innovative, child-centered, forward-looking high schools in the country.

Criteria for being listed as an innovative high school:

Any meaningful combination of…

  • A sincere child-centered approach which puts students needs above the curriculum.
  • Innovative approaches to pedagogy.
  • An emphasis on personalized / individualized learning.
  • The building of independent reasoning and critical thinking skills.
  • The nurturing of creativity (in a meaningful sense), as well as a focus on discovery based learning and problem-solving.
  • A different take on learning spaces.
  • A rethinking of timetables.
  • Questioning and debating the role of standardized testing, assignments and homework.
  • Rethinking the role of parents, teachers and students.
  • The meaningful use of technology.
  • How happy the students are.
  • The emphasis on life-long learning.
  • Structures which allow staff to try new things.
  • Social upliftment and environmental awareness initiatives.
  • A real and clear inclusion of students’ ideas, opinions and concerns.

But of course, a truly innovative school creates its own contextualized mixture of these criteria and more.

10. Victoria Park High School

(Co-Ed | State | NSC | Port Elizabeth | Eastern Cape)

* Winner of the best mission statement! *

At Victoria Park, we believe in the power of individuality. We break the mould and question the status quo. We believe that everybody can be somebody. We believe in exploring and amplifying the various talents that make each of our pupils unique. We believe that where you are going is more important than where you have come from.

We believe in the pursuit of excellence and the enjoyment of the journey along the way. We believe in giving our pupils every opportunity to find themselves by providing them with a variety of activities and facilities. We believe in fostering a pioneering spirit to tackle life’s challenges head-on.

We believe that everything you have is everything you need. We believe in bravery and self-belief. We believe in the power of encouragement, and in building confident and empowered young hearts and minds. We believe in dreaming big and working hard. We believe that talent can get you far but persistence can get you further.

A Victoria Park education is an education in life. It is a five-year window of equipping the next generation with the maturity, dedication and open-mindedness required to readily embrace their uniqueness and leave their mark on the world. At Victoria Park, we believe that preparation for life turns opportunities into success.

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