Contact Us
18 July 2023
High School Learners arrive at UWC for the Back on Track programme
The University of the Western Cape (UWC) opened its doors and lecture halls to hundreds of high school learners this week to address learning losses during the COVID-19 pandemic. 
Prof Burtram Fielding

In partnership with the Western Cape Education Department (WCED), the University hosted high school learners from the Metro South District as part of the department’s Back on Track programme. More than 1222 Grade 8 and 10 learners, 80 teachers, 100 UWC student tutors and eight subject advisors participated in the programme on campus between 10 to 13 July. 

UWC’s Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Teachers and Learners Training and Development Programme hosted the learners. This has been a long-term collaboration between the WCED and UWC with Dr Mark Herbert playing a critical role on behalf of the University, which is committed to effecting positive change in society. 

In the welcome address, Professor Burtram Fielding, UWC’s Dean of Natural Sciences, encouraged the learners to be curious about Mathematics and Science: “You have the solutions to the problems that we face. Keep on questioning and keep on being creative; that's where the answers are going to be found. You are the ones who can change your communities. Engage with each other; engage with the UWC staff and adults that are here to assist you. There is no such thing as a silly question. It's those silly questions that might provide the answers to the problems we are facing.”


The Western Cape Minister of Education, David Maynier, visited the learners on Wednesday and encouraged them to work hard and achieve their goals. 

Western Cape Minister of Education, David Maynier
“We are investing an enormous amount of money - R1.2 billion over three years - in this programme, and we really hope that it assists you to consolidate and improve your grades. Ultimately we hope it will enable you for those futures you spoke to me about. Getting the grades that you deserve and possibly getting into the Faculty of Law here at UWC and reaching your aspirations,” said Maynier. 

The WCED’s Chief Education Specialist, FET Curriculum, Dr Glynis Schreuder, acknowledged that the learners taking time from their winter holiday attests to their eagerness to learn. 

“Your being here acknowledges that learning doesn’t stop when school is out. So by participating in this camp you are enhancing your skills in mathematics and science.

Education is a lifelong journey, and it has and knows no boundaries and limits. Here in this camp you will have a unique chance to learn in an unconventional setting, away from the confines of your school and your traditional classrooms. Remember that learning is not confined to a classroom and to textbooks and to lectures alone. It happens when we immerse ourselves in new experiences,” said Dr Schreuder.
High School learners participating in the WCED Back on Track programme