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SPARK Schools to open its 16th facility

SPARKSchools

2017 Tutu Fellow Stacey Brewer will be opening her 16th educational facility in 2019 in Witpoortjie, South Africa. Stacey is the co-founder of SPARK Schools, an independent school network that she started in 2012 with Ryan Harrison. They believed that an innovative approach could disrupt the crisis in South African education and dedicated themselves to creating a new model that would provide access to high quality education for all.  The network keeps school fees as low as possible. Despite this, the network has schools rated among the top 10 private schools in Johannesburg.

During her MBA studies, Stacey investigated sustainable models for low-fee private schools.  This research served as the foundation for the establishment of SPARK schools.

SPARK Ferndale, the first school in the SPARK Schools network, opened in 2013 in Johannesburg.  Since then, the network has expanded to serve more than 4,000 SPARK scholars at eleven schools in Gauteng and the Western Cape. The schools use a blended learning model with adaptive software and individualised learning to accelerate learning and increase learner achievement. The acronym SPARK stands for Service, Persistence, Achievement, Responsibility, and Kindness.

SPARK Schools uses a hybrid funding model, having attracted funding from both non-profit foundations focused on high impact philanthropy and from for-profit impact investors. The new Witpoortjie campus, when it opens, will offer Grades R to 3 in its first year and then grow by a grade each year. As with other schools in their network, they try to keep after-school care costs low, too, to assist working parents. Children can stay till five thirty in the afternoon.

 

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Sunday, 21 October 2018

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