NEWSLETTER 8 November 2019


The record breakers. Below, Mr Bridger congratulates the swimmers who broke records in Friday’s Interhouse Gala.

Mr Bridger, Daniel Eagar, Tyler le Sar, Thembisile Magudulela, Ruan Leonard, Quentin Brugnolo, Renè du Preez, Malose Mohlabi and Jana Leonard. Only three of the eight got the D6 message to wear green to school on Monday.

The first Monday of every month is also provincial and SA colours day where those learners who have achieved these honours are invited to wear their colours to school in place of uniform. Daniel and Ruan chose to honour the Boks instead of invoking their right. Good choice, Guys!

Rugby World Cup

 These learners got the D6 message about wearing green. Here they show their joy at the William Webb Ellis Trophy coming home to South Africa for the next four years.

If you are not connected to the new version of th eD6, you will inevitably be missing messages like this one, which was cobbled together over the weekend. The answer is pretty simple – come and see Cornè to get connected/transferred.

Grade 11 Leadership Camp

This annual event was held at Hillside, property of Craig and Trish Pidduck. The Pidducks have generously allowed the Academy the use of their bush camp over many years, and it has proven to be the perfect venue for Leadership and Guppy Camps. Thank you, Craig and Trish.

A very big Thank You is due to Mr Roth who organized and led the camp and took care of our Grade 11’s while they were in the bush.

Joshua Hein and Ryan Briggs seat themselves on high, whilst Quinn Harmse and Ann-Jenica van Coller are just a little more cool.

Business Studies

Ryan Briggs, Ann-Jenica van Coller, Loapi Mosaka and Mirriam Mpete work on their entrepreneurial Projects

Grade 7 Farewell

Above: A mixed group of Grade 7 revellers and Grade 6 waitrons.

 Middle: Kamo Malemela and Carla Leonard seem to be enjoying the evening.

 Below: The parents’ table was very convivial

Mark Godfrey

San-Marie Stegmann Dux Recipient 2019

Farewell Message at Prize giving

Good morning Mr. Godfrey, Members of the Board, Teachers, Parents and Fellow students.

Today is a very bitter-sweet day for us as Matrics. It is our very last day that we will be amongst our teachers and friends before we head into our final exams. We are all very excited to close off our school career and embark on the incredible next chapter of our lives. However, we will be thrown into the deep end and without water wings to help us. But God will never leave our sides. He confirms this in Joshua 1:9 when He says, “Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” 

We might feel unprepared for what is to come in the future but Waterberg Academy has taught us so many crucial values and skills that we will carry with us into our next journey. Independence, integrity, humility, empathy and discipline; just to name a few. But most importantly, our school has taught us to be kind and loving, unconditionally. Our school is considered to be a family that is always there for each other. We do sometimes have our difference, like all families do, but at the end of the day we can still come together, laugh together and depend on each other.

Our school has offered us countless opportunities to make memories that will last us a lifetime. All the years of camping, making “stokbrood”, swimming in rivers, sleeping under the stars (which, initially not all of us were too happy about), going to the beach, building rafts (which, again, we weren’t too excited about after the tenth time but we did it anyways) and getting to know each other better in the process. We have been able to form not only bonds, but friendships with our teachers, which I don’t think many students can do in big schools. We are able to confide in our teachers and know that it will stay only with them.

I have been a student here my whole life and many teachers and students have come and gone, but something that has never faded is the love and concern we have for each other as pupils at this school.

A little message from us as the Matrics of 2019, is that you should appreciate our school and do not take it for granted. Do not wish that school can just end already because it really does come sooner than you expect it to. 

I asked my classmates what is something that they appreciate or enjoy about this school and their answers describe Waterberg Academy so perfectly. Their answers were that we get personal attention from teachers, we are given the opportunity to be book-smart and bush-smart, the fact that we are so close as a class and that we are like family, our teachers always show us love and kindness, our learners are always kind to each other and the school and teachers push us to reach our full potential. According to Spieg, he is just here for the “lekkerness”. I have been here since I can remember. It’s all I have ever known and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. I have made lifelong friends that I will cherish forever. 

Waterberg Academy has crawled underneath our skin over the years and it will always have a very special place in our hearts. 


NEWSLETTER 6 September 2019

Mountain Biking

Gianmarco Gualdi – 1st Boys U/8
Daniel Eagar – 3rd Boys U/10
Bradley Eagar – 2nd Boys U/14
Carla powers over an obstacle
Carla Jansen van Vuuren – 1st Girls U/14

Livingston Banda negotiates the rock garden as three dads watch in admiration. There are many dangers out there in this sport, but these courageous young people are fearless.

Livingston will be riding for Limpopo at the Nationals Championships during the September holiday.

These championships are only for High Schools, so Carla, who is top of her age group and Bradley who is no. 2, will not be competing. However, they were awarded provincial colours for their performances throughout the SPUR Series.

Waterberg Academy has had a very successful mountain biking season this year with Nikki Eagar as our coach. There have regularly been 14 or 15 learners at the training sessions and 10 or 12 at the Saturday races. And, of course, her sons Daniel and Bradley have led from the front. Thank you, Nikki! It has been wonderful to see each of the riders progress from only feeling comfortable on the flat ground to taking on obstacles which would make most adults blanche.

Waterberg Academy Arts Festival

Mrs McBride (organizer), Ms Mocke (adjudicator) and Miss Nicholson

Small wonder that our learners did so well this year with these three eisteddfod savvy ladies encouraging them every word of the way. And then there were the ladies who helped the learners with getting their presentations right, both for individual and choral work. In fact, the choral verse got an unprecedented number of prestige awards this year – testament to the hard work of the “coaches.”

Mrs McBride has organized our Waterberg Academy Arts Festival for the past five years, and we have watched the performances of our learners improve every year. Whenever she is thanked or congratulated for her hard work, she is quick to deflect the praise towards those who have helped her.  Thank you, Janice, and all your helpers.

Cross Country

Asher Petersen shows why he is no. 6 in Limpopo.

Secretaries’ Day

Our new secretary/PA to the headmaster, Mrs Cornè Pretorius was pleasantly surprised on Wednesday when she was presented with some goodies to mark Secretaries’ Day.

World Rhino Day

Mrs Swales has been the Academy’s liaison with Jessica Babich and the SAPS in all the planning for World Rhino Day on Thursday 19 September. Here the organizing committee is meeting in our staff room to plan for a bigger and better display.

Physical Sciences

Joshua Hein is busy adding the acid  solution from a burette to the base in the flask to observe the exact moment that the base changes from blue to yellow.


Hands up if you remember doing titration experiments in your school days!

Cricket – Inter House

Kemelo Mocheko unleashes
Curtsy Sorofa – wide stance
Scott McBride sweeps

What a close contest – Davidson won by 2 runs!

Generations Day

Well done, Foundation Phase teachers. Your charges were outstanding and the hall looked lovely.

Parents and Grandparents watch the littlies perform.
Grade One to Three sing to the piano played by Etta Steyn.

Mark Godfrey

NEWS LETTER 08 March 2019


At this time of the year we visit preparatory schools and market the Academy with a view to attracting learners into our High School for the following year. Many prep schools in the area feel that they are closely linked to their local High School and do not afford us the opportunity of speaking to their learners. However, we were able to visit Lephalale Primary School, Eugene Marais and Euphorbia in Mookgopong, and Laerskool Vaalwater.

On each of these visits I took Miss Nicholson along so that the youngsters could identify with someone closer to their own age. On our first outing to Lephalale Primary School, Miss Nicholson took the floor near the end and what she had to say and the way she said it made it almost impossible for the teachers present to clear the Grade 6 and 7 learners from the hall!

Miss Nicholson has a real gift for reaching young people and they fell under her spell. In fact, I have been doing these visits for 6 years and this year we had the best response we have ever had. That is partly because of our presentation and partly because Waterberg Academy has been making rather large waves in the academic world and in the individual sports – archery in particular. The kids now KNOW about us.

On Tuesday evening we held a cocktail marketing evening at The Junction in Lephalale. I want to thank all our Lephalale parents who came out to meet with our visitors. Many families brought their kids along and I want also to say, “Well done,” to those young people who came and sat through the evening. And a final thank you to our staff, the members of our Board, and our Head Boy and Head Girl, who were present.

In this picture we can see Mrs Leonard, Mrs Raubenheimer, Mrs De Klerk, Dr Mohlabi, Malose Mohlabi, Mrs. Mohlabi, San-Marie Stegmann (obscured) and Boitumelo Mataboge (blurred by movement)
In this picture we can see Mrs Leonard, Mrs Raubenheimer, Mrs De Klerk, Dr Mohlabi, Malose Mohlabi, Mrs. Mohlabi, San-Marie Stegmann (obscured) and Boitumelo Mataboge (blurred by movement)

Tomorrow, Mrs Swales and Mr O’Kelly will be attending the MUDDY BUDDY Family Fun Day in Lephalale to do a little marketing. Two of our learners and an adult will be entering the 13h00 Fun Race. They have asked that any Academy learners in Lephalale who are interested join them.

Boarding Establishment Stayovers

Our archers are going to Rustenburg to shoot in a competition tomorrow. The bus will be departing at 04h00 and some of the archers will be sleeping over in the Boarding Establishment to facilitate this. This is a service we offer to our parents to obviate the necessity of driving around late at night or very early in the morning.

Instances where this service becomes useful are such things as early departures of the bus to sporting fixtures, learner functions that end late (Valentine and Spring dances), or simply when Mom and Dad need to be away for a night and prefer not to leave their children on the farm alone.

The procedure to follow if you wish to make use of this service is to email the office for permission at least 24 hours before the time of the stayover and stipulate the meals that your child should be given. Please note that meals are charged at R25 each.

In addition, we do not charge for the stayover, only the meals. This service is in place to assist parents in times of need and is definitely not for recreational purposes.

A Big Day

Joshua Hopewell celebrated his birthday yesterday with his Grade Two classmates. My, but they grow up quickly!
Joshua Hopewell celebrated his birthday yesterday with his Grade Two classmates. My, but they grow up quickly!

Class Visits

Grade 9 Mathematics
Grade 9 Mathematics
Grade 6 Mathematics
Grade 6 Mathematics

Horse Riding

A N Other, Lyandi van der Merwe and Carla Leonard pose for a photograph before their lesson this week at the new Riding School at the Leonard Stables.
A N Other, Lyandi van der Merwe and Carla Leonard pose for a photograph before their lesson this week at the new Riding School at the Leonard Stables.


Chantal Prinsloo, Ciska Leonard and Lanchè Lötter shot in the first ever NASP ADULTS Competition to be held in Limpopo. Mrs Leonard won and Mrs Lötter placed third.
Chantal Prinsloo, Ciska Leonard and Lanchè Lötter shot in the first ever NASP ADULTS Competition to be held in Limpopo. Mrs Leonard won and Mrs Lötter placed third.
Young Ruan Leonard (Grade 5) is going places in the field of archery. At the weekend he placed 1st overall in both the Bullseye Competition and the 3D Competition. Overall means under 21, nogal! Ruan is only 10 years old and already represent Limpopo in the Junior High (Under 21) Team. We wait with bated breath to see when he will gain national selection.

Young Ruan Leonard (Grade 5) is going places in the field of archery. At the weekend he placed 1st overall in both the Bullseye Competition and the 3D Competition. Overall means under 21, nogal!

Ruan is only 10 years old and already represent Limpopo in the Junior High (Under 21) Team. We wait with bated breath to see when he will gain national selection.

Mark Godfrey

NEWS LETTER 05 Desember 2018

Nativity and Carols Evening

The Teachers Group: Mrs Calcott, Mrs Leonard, Mr Roux, Mr Roth, Mr Sulo and Mr Simiti.

Grade R Graduation

Junior Preparatory

The Grade Ones show off their certificates with their teacher and HOD, Mrs van Niekerk.

Senior Preparatory Prize

Ds. Ernest Vogt delivers his speech to the learners. Ds. Vogt was our Senior Preparatory Guest of Honour.
Top Achievers – Nomusa Funyufunyu G6, Makwidi Kgo-montsho G5, Kabelo Mohlabi G7 & Caitlin Pidduck G4 with HOD Mr O’Kelly.
Citizenship Award G5 – Mia du Preez.
Farewell and thanks for your sterling work – Mariette Nicholson – PTA Secretary and a parent here for 12 years.
Mr Brugnolo helped with the swimming training. Here he receives a thank you gift from son, Quentin.

High School Prize Giving

Jana Leonard was Top Achiever in Grade 8. Here she is congratulated by HOD Academics and her mother, Ciska Leonard.
Bianca Nortje was Top Achiever in Grade 9.
Mirriam Mpete was Top AchieverIn Grade 10. In this picture she isteacher Janice McBride for also winning the Senior Drama prize.
Lucy Calcott was the DUX with an average of 96%. Here she is congratulated by guest of honour - Clive Walker.
Boitumelo Mataboge and San-Marie Stegmann were appointed Head Boy and Head Girl for 2019. San-Marie was also Top Achiever in Grade 11.


By the time you receive this newsletter, the Christmas holiday will be in full swing with just the reports to be collected on Thursday. Please collect these between 08h00 an 10h00 on Thursday 6 December 2018. The HODs will be onsite to hand these out at each phase block. High School reports will be available at Mrs Leonard’s classroom, Senior Preparatory reports will be available from Mr O’Kelly’s classroom, Junior Preparatory reports from Mrs van Niekerk’s classroom and the Pre-Preparatory reports from Mrs Joan Leonard’s classroom.

If you are unable to collect the report yourself, you may nominate someone to do that for you IN WRITING to Solita at You may, if travelling away on an extended holiday, request in writing at the same email address that your report be emailed to you and then collect the hard copy when returning to School next year.

May I take this opportunity to wish all our learners, parents, staff and friends a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year. May 2019 bring to you all that you wish.

Mark Godfrey

NEWS LETTER 21 September 2018

Mountain Biking

Three mountain bikers represented the Academy at Ellisras High School on Saturday. This was probably the best organized of all the SPUR Schools MTB Cross Country meetings ever. The main field looked more impressive than a formula one race track with 400 riders and 800 parents and coaches. Carla Jansen van Vuuren did us proud by winning her race. In fact, Carla has won all four of these events this year, making her the undisputed U/12 Girls champion. Livingston Banda came fourth in the U/15 and U/16 group and in so doing accumulated enough points to get him through to third spot on the Limpopo U/15 team. Scott McBride rode his first ever mountain bike race for the School and added one point to our points aggregate. Well done, all three of you!

Carla and Livingstone will compete in the South African MTB Cross Country Championships at Bekker High School in October.

Carla won her race and got her Limpopo colours
Livingstone makes his Limpopo colours.
Carla is now in a class of her own.
Livvy raced from start to finish and beat no. 4 by mere centimetres.
Scotty enjoying his race.
MTB is a brilliant family sport.

Music Evening

Phil Calcott with Lucy off camera.
Renè and Tairona collaborating.
The junior preparatory choir.
Solly Nkhumane – musician extraordinaire.
ROL Records have become a fixture at our Music Evenings – complete with screaming following.

World Rhino Day

Jessica Babich brought together a number of key role players in the fight against the slaughter of an important part of our South African heritage – the rhino. Headed up by K9 Security and supported by the South African Police Services and a local helicopter pilot, after some demonstrations of anti-hijacking, the efficacy of both sniffer and attack dogs and a drill display by Working on Fire, a spectacular joint operation was staged with eight “poachers”, rhino security, snipers, security units, SAPS and a private helicopter.

The rifle “fire” was loud and got everyone’s attention from the first shot. Then there were smoke grenades, some thunder flashes, and automatic fire from the circling helicopter with two security officers harnessed and on the skids. This was an astonishing display. The deployment of this level of defence by so many co-operating groups will go a long way to saving our rhinos.

He doesn’t let grass grow under his feet.
The “ poachers” close in.
Mayhem ensues as the poachers attack time and again.
The rhinos are safe and the “ poachers” are all down. . .
. . . and the attack dogs mop up the fugitive (suited up for the exercise.)

Presentation of NASP Limpopo Colours in Archery

The Limpopo Development Team complete with coach – congratulations Mrs Leonard.
The NASP Limpopo Senior Primary Team. Coach – Miss Nicholson was absent.
Some of the NASP Limpopo Junior High School Team. Several were absent from assembly today.

Mark Godfrey

NEWS LETTER 03 August 2018

The Selfish Ladybug

The entrance to. . .

a magical world. . .

peopled by butterflies, insects and frogs.

The play, for which the Junior Prep has been rehearsing the entire year, was staged this week and was a great success. The props were totally amazing. Well done, Mrs van Niekerk and your helpers. The backdrop was stunning, Thank you Mrs Mason. The music was perfect, thank you Mrs Stegmann – especially for coming to school every day to practice with the learners. The costumes were superlative, Thank you mothers and costumiers. The décor was wild. Thank you, the decorating team.

A school stage production requires input from a great number of people. The many rehearsals to get the performers up to speed and the amount of time required to prepare props and costumes is staggering. For our delightful play the time was dedicated, and practicing was relentless. The Junior Prep learners sang the songs every day and the High School learned them involuntarily. Well done, High School, for encouraging instead of complaining. The end result was a show to be remembered.

Mountain Biking

On Saturday, mountain bikers of all ages converged on Merensky High School in Tzaneen to compete in the SPUR Schools Mountain Biking XCO. The race started on the Merensky playing fields and then headed off into an avocado orchard with some interesting twists and turns. This particular race is known as the Tour de Plaas.

Carla Jansen van Vuuren, no. 3 U/12 Girl in the country at present, won her race comfortably by taking the lead on an uphill just 500m in. She kept the second girl behind her until the last kilometre, then she poured on the gas on the final climb and opened a 300m gap. Well done, Carla!

Livingstone Banda rode in the Boys U/16 category, which is very competitive. He was 21st at the 200m mark, managed safely to negotiate a pile-up on the first sharp corner, and finished the first lap in 11th position. At the end of the full three laps, Livvy had managed to improve his placing to 9th. What impressed me was that Livvy left it all out on the track. He fell down at the end of the race and was unable to get up for a full ten minutes. Well done, Livvy!

Carla maintains her lead.
Livvy at the end of the first lap.

Physical Sciences

You will remember from your days studying Physical Science that an exothermic reaction is a chemical reaction which releases heat. The Grade Elevens tested this with some granular chlorine and water, and what better place for it than the swimming pool.

Mr Sithole dishes out hth to Michael, Rebecca and San-Marie (obscured).
The moment of truth. And . . . it works!


Computer Room Upgrade

The current computers were donated by a past parent in 2010 and can no longer be upgraded. For 2019 we need to replace all the desktop computers in our Computer Room. Further, we need to acquire 15 tablets/iPads for our learners. These items need to be included in next year’s budget. If anyone can help with a contact to keep these costs to a minimum, please contact Mrs Swales or myself.

Mark Godfrey

NEWS LETTER 24 February 2017


Three areas of outstanding achievement were acknowledged in the assembly this morning.


The first of these was the announcement to the learners that Charlton Mwenesani and Rafologang Buthane had been selected onto the South African NASP Development Team.  They will shoot in an international tournament later in the year.  Well done, Charlton on your second year in this team.  Clearly you are working hard to stay up at the top.  And well done, Rafologang, on making the team for the first time at such a young age.


Charlton and Rafologang – SA Development Archer swith their proud coach – Mr Bridger

Charlton and Rafologang – SA Development Archer swith their proud coach – Mr Bridger

Horse Riding

Lyandi van der Merwe is progressing “in leaps and bounds” in this demanding sport.  At a recent SANESA event she rode in six events and placed 2nd in five of them and 3rd in the other one.  To crown it all, Lyandi received a certificate for the following: BEST WORKING RIDER AT PRIMARY SCHOOL LEVEL IN LIMPOPO IN 2016.

Horse Riding

You are doing SO well, Lyandi. We are proud of you!


For the IEB International Benchmarking Tests in Reasoning and Thinking Skills for Grades 3 and 10 held in November 2016, we have just received astonishingly good results.  This is a collaborative effort between the Australian Education people and the IEB and the tests are taken around the world.  This makes these tests of great value in gauging our educational standards in relation to what you might find elsewhere “on the planet.”



                                                    English                   Mathematics                               Science

Makwidi Kgomontsho                 88%

Kiandra Doubell                                                              100%                                          88%

Carla Jansen van Vuuren           100%                           88%                                          100%


Kiandra, Carla and Makwidi – among the very cleverest on earth!


                                                     English                         Mathematics                       


Wiané van Druten                       82%                          

Nadja Nortje                                 91%                                  89%


Lucy Calcott                                 100%                               100%


Nadja was among the top 1% of learners in Problem Solving.

Lucy was among the top 1% of learners in Critical Thinking.

Lucy was also among the top 1% of Learners overall.


These results would suggest that we are not simply filling up the minds of our learners with facts, which was the educational pattern of a hundred years ago (and is still followed in some schools.)  This is evidence that Waterberg Academy is at the forefront of thinking in education, and doing an excellent job of preparing our learners for life in the 21st century.  Remember, many of our learners will leave school and university to take on jobs that do not even exist yet, and many of the traditional types of work as we know them will have disappeared over the next 12 years. It is essential we equip them to be able to compete successfully in whatever field they one day choose.



English teacher, Janice McBride, Wiané van Druten, Lucy Calcott, Nadja Nortje and Maths teacher Ciska Leonard. Our DREAM TEAM! No pressure, but these numbers speak to very good results in Matric next year.

High School Valentine’s Dance

Before the dancing began last night, a bunch of us teachers were standing on the dance floor and learners were coming up to us and greeting us and shaking our hands and one of the teachers said, “You know, we have got really nice learners this year.”  And I must concur.  Some years back a culture of respect and general “niceness” began more and more to permeate the High School and this year it is even more evident than ever!  And we have some superb boys and girls at the top of the school, young people we can be proud of.

Once we vacated the floor and Moses got into DJ mode, the volume went up and the games began!

Mark Godfrey