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Online school Switch eDu Online takes applications for 2022

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Nicky Blumenfeld, communications specialist at Switch eDu Online.
Nicky Blumenfeld, communications specialist at Switch eDu Online.

Newly-introduced online-only school Switch eDu Online has opened applications for its 2022 cohort, promising pupils a “fresh approach” to learning.

Established in April through its Switch Saturdays free maths tutoring platform, Switch eDu Online will offer its first academic cohort in January 2022 a curriculum for foundation, intermediate and senior levels.

The school will offer tuition from grade one through to grade eight in 2022. This will be followed by grade nine in January 2023 and grades 10 to12 in January 2024.

The online school says it aims to make education accessible through the provision of affordable private school education tailored in accordance with the National Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS) requirements. Fees range from R1 250 per month for the foundation phase, to R1 499 for the intermediate and senior phases.

“With our team of highly-experienced and passionate education specialists, we were inspired to re-think learning and launched Switch eDu Online,” says Nicky Blumenfeld, communications specialist at Switch eDu Online.

“It offers an end-to-end learner management system called Classter, which allows learners to keep track of their academic performance with a personalised calendar of events and teaching schedules.

“Parents can also follow their children's schedules and general academic performance, and stay in contact with teachers. Teachers can use this platform to upload tasks, homework or lesson plans and other class activities for learners to access.”

According to its developers, Classter is used by 500 institutions in more than 25 countries around the world.

The virtual school offers the CAPS curriculum, allowing pupils to acquire the National Senior Certificate. It offers a range of subjects and extramural activities.

Switch eDu also provides optional short courses in international languages, such as French, Swahili, Mandarin and German.

The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns prompted an explosion in online learning programmes.

The school closures during the initial stages of the pandemic reportedly led to an estimated half of the world’s youth not attending schools or universities, resulting in education institutions looking at virtual teaching tools − such as automated development platforms, learning management systems and virtual classrooms − as alternatives.

According to Blumenfeld, the school offers a dual approach to online learning, premised on two pillars.

“Firstly, we offer a synchronous approach to learning – most of our classes are teacher-led and taught through live online lessons using clear, informed presentation of information. These are recorded and are available to leaners to re-play later, or for those who may have missed the live class.”

The asynchronous learning approach is applied to complement the synchronous learning. “Asynchronous tools are learner-centred applications offering hands-on activities and independent learning, where learners will be given tasks to learn and complete on their own out of class,” adds Blumenfeld.

The online school hosts free online maths group tutoring classes called “Switch Saturdays”. The free support lessons are hosted virtually every Saturday and are open to all grade two to nine learners across South Africa.

For registrations, visit the Switch eDu Online website.

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