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At the Gate of the Year: Mr De Waal’s Message

27 December 2017, Kaplan House

Dear Parents & Guardians

My thanks to you all for your support and encouragement this year. 2017 has been challenging at times but the positives have far outweighed the negatives and we can all be proud of the achievements of our boys. They would not be where they are if it were not for your hard work and the co-operation between our parents and staff.

It is with great sadness that we learned on Sunday 10 December of the passing of former Headmaster Mr Rowan Algie (1984 – 1992). Our thoughts and prayers are with his widow, Rose, daughters Debby and Jenny, and the Algie family.

With all the academic reports made available electronically via the Parent Portal before school closed for administration staff on 15 December, we look now to the release of our 2017 National Senior Certificate results on Friday 5 January 2018, at 12h00 in the school foyer.

While we prepare to welcome a record number of new boys to WBHS in January, some of our summer sports teams return early for 1st XI cricket trials followed by the Cape Cricket Festival (8 – 12 January, on the Jacques Kallis Oval). Our U15A cricketers travel to the Somerset College Festival in the same week, while water polo practices begin in earnest. We wish them all well, and a successful term’s sport ahead.

Work around our campus has continued throughout the holidays, with the Bill Bowden undergoing a refurbishment in advance of reopening on 5 January under the joint management of Feedem and the Old Boys’ Union, and essential pedestrian upgrades to the link road between the back parking area and Aletta Walk. During the break, we reported on the first of our Solaris Energy Poles being planted – part of our commitment to a sustainable Wynberg.

At the end of the fourth term, we sadly said farewell to Mr Pieter Smith on his retirement, Mr Bernard Loots who takes up a position outside of teaching in Botswana, and Mr Anthony Sparrow who takes a post at Maritzburg College.

In all cases we have been fortunate to find replacements of a very high caliber who are looking forward to the opportunity of teaching at Wynberg:

Mr Devin Stanton replaces Mr Paul Revington

Mr Ben Wiley replaces Mr Anton Grobler

Mr Gareth Searle replaces Mr Warren Grobler

Ms Roxy Meaker replaces Mr Pieter Smith

Mr Patrick Smith replaces Mr Bernard Loots

Mr Chris Rushby replaces Mr Simon Askew

Mr Jean Holton replaces Mr Anthony Sparrow

Because our numbers are increasing next year and we are introducing Electronics as a new subject, we have appointed two additional teachers. Mr Visser Gildenhuys to teach languages and Mr Stefan Pretorius to teach Electronics. As previously mentioned, Mr Andrew Wylie also joined us earlier in 2017 as Director of Cricket.

We wish all the staff leaving us well in the next phase of their respective lives and welcome the new staff to Wynberg. We hope that their stay at Wynberg will be long and fulfilling.

As we face the dawn of a new year, I wish you a restful break, a blessed festive season and a successful 2018. I look forward to welcoming you all back on the 17 January 2018.

Jan de Waal
Headmaster, Wynberg Boys’ High School

From “The Gate of the Year” by Minnie Louise Haskins, published 1912

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”
And he replied:
“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”
So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

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