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Mary Harding School

Mary Harding School situated in Athlone caters for children with barriers to learning (Afrikaans and English medium).

The word barrier is used in education to describe to the parent, teacher and other interested individuals of the presence of an obstacle in the child's way which is preventing that child from attaining the desired success in the mainstream curriculum.

These obstacles are seen as being either in the child, such as genetics, hyperactivity or outside the child, such as social problems. It can also be a combination of both factors.

Learners enter the school at the age of 6 and leave at the age of 18 for protective workshops, sheltered employment or where possible, employment in the open labour market.

The aim of the educational programme is to maximize independence, productivity and produce learners who are well adjusted to themselves and the community.

The school follows a curriculum that is adapted from the National Curriculum Statements. Our focus is on Life skills, Functional Literacy and Functional Numeracy.

The medium of instruction is in Afrikaans and English.

Educational goals

- To develop the potential of young people
- To help young people feel a sense of belonging
- To help young people feel a sense of personal worth
- To help young people feel a sense of purpose


The staff consist of the following:

- Hostel supervisors
- Hostel assistants
- General assistants
- The school principal

- A Factotum
- School secretary
- School bursar
- School bus drivers

- School nurse
- Two occupational therapists
- One speech therapist

- Four departmental heads
- Twenty Educators
- A deputy principal
- Teacher assistants


• Mary Harding School is a secular school
• A culture of respect and tolerance for all religions and spiritual needs of the school community will be fostered.
• Attempts during school hours by members of a particular belief system to convert any member of the school community to the same belief system is unacceptable.
• Assemblies and other formal gatherings of the school community will not have a religious or spiritual nature.
• Religious lessons of particular content are not offered in the class.
• No religious rites will be performed by any Mary Harding Staff member with a learner.

School Fees

The SGB determine school fees. Mary Harding School is a fee-paying school. The school fees per learner per year is R200, bus fees are R800 per learner per year and hostel fees are R2000 per learner per year, payable over a period of 10 months. It is compulsory for all learners to pay school fees. If parents are not able to pay school fees, they need to apply for a concession to the SGB. The SGB uses WCED guidelines to determine school fee concessions. It is the responsibility of parents to apply for the concession.

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School Hostel

The school has a school hostel. Admission is approved by the SMT on recommendation of the SBST. The school hostel operates from Monday morning to Friday afternoon. All meals are provided when a learner is placed in the hostel. If learners display extreme challenging behaviour, their placement could be reconsidered. 24 Hour supervision for all learners at the hostel is provided.

The school hostel is regarded as a home away from home as well as an extension of the school’s learning programmes. Therefore, apart from providing care, nutrition and safety, learners are stimulated with self-help, leisure, social interaction, domestic and independence skills.


Klipfontein Road, Athlone



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