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Our Philosophy

Our Philosophy

Whole child education happens in the broadest sense of the word at Oakhill and this involves much more than the excellent academic standards we maintain. From Grade 000 to Grade 12 we strive to ignite the imaginations of our pupils by encouraging them to explore and discover, question and create – to experience the joy of learning. It is a unique journey for each child towards developing identity and reaching their potential. We believe that every child has the ability to learn but not necessarily in the same way as the next one.

This is why educators at Oakhill are encouraged to teach the way their pupils learn, rather than expecting them to learn the way we teach. This does not mean that the process is unstructured – on the contrary. It means that we as educators are constantly reflecting on our pedagogy and questioning the content of the curriculum we offer. We are privileged to enjoy a technology-rich school environment which offers the opportunity for innovative teaching and learning.

Outside the classroom, we have an educational agenda that reaches far beyond the obsession with winning that is too often prevalent in schools nowadays. We play to win, but not at all costs, and strive for excellence but not perfection. We encourage our pupils to have a balanced extramural involvement which includes sport and the arts, and we pride ourselves in the fact that the fields and the stages at Oakhill are equally vibrant spaces. Here our pupils learn about teamwork, sportsmanship, leadership, perseverance, resilience and how to handle victory, defeat, applause and disappointment in an appropriate way.

Oakhill prides itself on integrity and values, and it is deeply meaningful that the 2017 matrics’ farewell gift to the school was a ‘values signpost’ which was installed on the circle at the school entrance. Recorded on the signpost are ten core values this group associated with the education they received at Oakhill: Joy of learning, mindfulness, responsibility, integrity, collaboration, respect, resilience, perseverance, humility and empathy.

The School recognizes the individuality of each child and provides a framework in which freedom and discipline sit comfortably with each other. Pupils are encouraged to think independently and respect one another’s viewpoint. This approach builds confidence, strength of character, self-discipline and instils a desirable value system and moral code that enables children to make decisions and take responsibility for their actions. The curriculum teaches our students to respect religious differences and allows parents to set the tone for a child’s spiritual development. Oakhill students should leave with both life skills and the skills for life, ready to continue their journey with confidence.

We want to inspire each child to take a keen interest in the complex world they inhabit and the people with whom they share it. To modern children this is the world of social media, technology and rapid change where anything is possible. We are telling our pupils that they do not have to wait to grow up before they can make a difference in the world. They could well come up with solutions to the big social and environmental challenges threatening our population and planet today. They could be the creators of the next fantastic concept that could take the world by storm. We want our pupils to grow in the values they choose as guiding posts in their lives so that they can fulfil their role in society and make a difference in the wider community. Still true to the vision of the founding members, we send out young people from Oakhill who are well-rounded citizens with the ability to think for themselves and the heart to care for others and the environment. We send them out to be difference makers in a future world holding exponential change, massive challenges and unlimited opportunity.

Oakhill follows the Independent Examinations Board (IEB) syllabus which maintains international university entrance standards. We take our responsibility to provide excellence in preparing our senior pupils for their NSC examinations very seriously. Internationally, a school leaver’s certificate is regarded as very important for accessing tertiary education and even the world of work. The South African National Senior Certificate (NSC) is accepted as a credible qualification by South African and international universities, provided that the results achieved by candidates are good enough. It is therefore imperative to us that Oakhill pupils leave school with the best possible matric results. We are proud of the excellent results our students have achieved, year after year, since the inception of the school, thanks to exceptional teachers who will leave no stone unturned in the guidance and support of their students.

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