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One of the important lessons learnt in our research has been that a new paradigm for schools needs to become entrenched – one in which schools are conceptualised as centres of care and support. This notion is not a new one; rather, it is well rooted in existing policy. The need to make the shift from a narrow focus on what schools do and how they are led, to the notion of schools as centres of care and support becomes urgent when one takes cognisance of the number of orphans and vulnerable children as evidenced in this research sample alone. The challenge is to give realisable, practical expression to existing policy.
Thus, while retaining their emphasis on teaching and learning, schools need to focus on a few well chosen interventions. This study suggests that basic nutrition, aftercare and support with school work, and psycho-social support are preconditions for successful
learning and teaching to take place. Schools will therefore be required to build supportive networks to:
  •  better manage, strengthen and expand the current provincial nutrition programmes;
  • establish aftercare facilities; and
  • manage psycho-social support and referral services.
Maryla Bialobrzeska
Christina Randell
Liora Hellmann
Maryla Bialobrzeska, Christina Randell, Liora Hellmann, Gisela Winkler
License Condition: Creative Commons: Attribution 2.5  
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