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We want to thank our partners for their support in a successful and much appreciated visit of our members of the board of directors. Participants were Mrs. Caroline Gennez (member of parliament), Mrs. Judith Kerkhof (lecturer at University College), Mr. Lieven Viaene (inspector-general Flemish education) and Mr. Jef Tavernier (former member of parliament and former minister). They were accompanied by Sven Rooms, acting general director at VVOB.

The board gained first-hand experience with the South African education system and got to know its strengths and challenges through interesting discussions during the visits to several partners and institutions.

In Pretoria the board visited DBE, SACE and the Flemish Representation. Via North-West University in Vanderbijlspark (research networking between VVOB, Optentia and other South African Universities was discussed, more info ) and a shared meal and discussion at the District Teacher Development Centre in Kroonstad, the board reached Bloemfontein. There the board was received by the MEC education of Free State and in a separate meeting by the DDG Mr. Monnane and his team of the Free State Department of Education. Furthermore, the board had the pleasure to visit Mabeoana and Marty Du Plessis, two schools in Bloemfontein from which teachers participate in a PLC in Motheo. In Cape Town the board visited IESA our partner in the EU project and the Stellenzicht Secondary Stellenbosch, which has a VVOB supported school-link to a Flemish school.

The visit has proved to be a fruitful and enriching exchange of views and information:

“Being based in Brussels, these kinds of visits are really important for me and the members of the Board of Directors. It provides us the opportunity to understand what is really at stake at country level. Listening to the challenges of our partners and team members is always a learning experience. Also this time. The whole delegation was really impressed about how VVOB is – together with the partners – dealing with the challenges of the education system in South Africa.”

Sven Rooms, acting general director VVOB