FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. How much are the school fees?
Our current fees structure can be found under INFO & FEES.
2. What sports can my child do after school?
We manage all our sports in-house and this includes cricket, tennis, hockey, soccer, golf and chess. Karate is also offered privately, as well as Gymnikids for Grades 1 – 3
3. Do you do the same curriculum that other schools do?
Yes, we follow the CAPS curriculum and write our exams through SACAI (South African Comprehensive Assessment Institute)
4. What subjects do you offer in Grade 10 – 12?
English HL, Afrikaans FAL, Maths Literacy, LO, Tourism, Consumer Studies and CAT. Learners can choose between Life Science or Business Studies. During their Grade 9 year, we evaluate and decide on the Grade 10 subjects based on the interests and abilities of our students.
5. What else does my school fee include?
Every child has access to counselling or play therapy, if this has been recommended, as well as the Neuronet programme in Grades 1-3 and the online remedial reading programme in Grades 1 – 7. The pupil/teacher ratio is 6:1 which allows for a more personalized approach in the classroom. Our multi-disciplinary team led by our SENCO is always on hand to offer any advice or support to parents. Contact details for each team member are on the website. Proper exam preparation ensures that pupils are well-prepared and organised and concessions such as separate venues or scribes are also provided, within our resources and if a proper diagnosis such as dyslexia, has been made by a professional, and the recommendation is stated.
6. What other therapies do you offer?
The following therapies are not included in school fees but are offered during the school day:
7. Are you a mainstream school?
Yes, we offer the same curriculum that is followed at other schools but we include a lot of classroom support for our students. We also offer a vocational option and currently have 4 classes in this stream. We also offer an online learning centre for students who are self-driven and prefer to set their own pace for learning. The learning centre has shorter school hours, as they finish at 1 pm every day and at 12.30 pm on Friday.
8. How do I know that Elsen is the right fit for my child?
We offer a no-obligation week’s visit to give your child an opportunity to experience Elsen Academy for themselves. This week also allows us to get to know your child and see what his/her needs are. At the end of the week, we will meet with you to make the final decision. This week can be extended if necessary.
9. How big are your classes?
Classes are no bigger than 14. In some cases, we have teacher assistants that co-teach with our teachers. Therapists are also often seen in class adding extra support.
10. Is there a school uniform?
We have a summer and a winter uniform. Pupils in Grades 4 – 12 wear blazers and ties. The learning centre students do not wear a uniform.
11. What communication will I receive?
We make use of bulk SMS for important announcements or sports cancellations. Teachers send daily homework emails and regularly inform parents about projects or assignments that are due. We also have a Facebook page and a website that is kept current. Minutes from LS meetings and case conferences are also sent home. Reminders and announcements are also sent on the parent Whatsapp group.
12. Do you offer an after-care programme?
After-care is offered for parents who work. There is also a homework centre that supervises and completes homework for children in Grades 4 – 7.
13. How can parents get involved?
At the beginning of every year, a list is sent home with some of the areas where help from parents is needed, i.e. invigilating during exams, providing flowers for the lobby, contributing prizes to a golf day or other fundraising events. We have a parent body called the EMA’s and they meet once a term.
14. What if my child is not able to manage the academic curriculum?
Fortunately, we do have various options and categories of support that are offered. Once your child is accepted, he/she is placed according to the amount of support and intervention that is needed. Categories 1 – 3 involve mainstream with some supportive therapies or interventions (if necessary). Category 4 refers to the mainstream with some modified areas such as maths and/or exam concessions. If your child is on a category 4 and is still not coping adequately, it might be necessary to consider the vocational stream. These classes have been created with the objective to develop our children into independent, skilled and productive adults. We focus on 3 main areas, i.e. literacy, functional maths and life skills. We also offer woodwork, cooking, computer literacy, gardening and some basic barista skills.
The online learning centre provides another option if the child does not enjoy the formal, traditional classroom setup.
15. Will my child get the same matric certificate as students in other schools?
Elsen Academy is an independent school that has decided to write exams that are set by an external examining body. Other alternatives to the government set exams are Cambridge and the IEB. SACAI is our exam body of choice and we are a registered SACAI centre. SACAI is accredited with UMALUSI that issues all matric certificates, therefore our matric certificates are the same as the certificates issued at other schools.
16. My child suffers from dyslexia, what support is there for him?
Our teachers use extensive resources that are dyslexia-friendly, i.e. power-point presentations, songs and rhymes to help learn concepts, mindmaps, diagrams, etc. Using technology in our classrooms such as iPads and laptops enables students to find their most suitable method to learn. We encourage a blended learning approach where at times, work can be accessed on a laptop or iPad and the lessons are online or sent to the students via their Google Drive, email or Google Classroom. This means that the work is presented in a way that the student has both visual and auditory input and the student can repeat the lessons as often as is necessary.
17. What support is there for my child during exams?
During tests and exams, students are offered various concessions, in order to ensure that they are not disadvantaged in any way. The concessions take place in a separate venue, reader, scribe, rest breaks, snack break, prompt and emotional support if the student is anxious. Our SENCO makes these applications to SACAI at the beginning of the year and the permission that is granted is carried throughout the students time at our school.