Stay focused, say Queen’s Park High matrics

Queen’s Park High matrics Mwai Kapatika, left, and Leila Davids.

They’ve endured a global pandemic and rampant load-shedding during their school careers, but Queen’s Park High matric pupils Mwai Kapatika and Leila Davids are undaunted and say they are ready to tackle their final year of high school head-on.

Both Mwai, 17, from Salt River, and Leila, 17, from Woodstock, had good Grade 11 passes last year, but agree it will take another year of hard work to get past matric.

Having both weathered the disruptions to schooling caused by the Covid-19 lockdown, both girls recall the difficulties they faced during that time.

“During the lockdown, I had to find a way to be interested in learning while being at home,” says Mwai.

Leila says she missed her teachers during the lockdown. “I would come one a week to collect my schoolwork from teachers, though the challenge was that I could not receive the same assistance at home as at school.”

While lockdown is behind them, the girls say that they and many of their friends are worried about the impact of worsening load shedding on their studies.

“During load shedding, we have to ensure our phones and laptops are charged and whether we have data. It does affect how we do our school work,” says Leila.

Mwai says she would like to study film and media studies at UCT after matric. “I have goals for my future, I knew that the grades that I worked on will help my future. The more dedication I show in getting good grades, the more it will help me as I get older.”

Leila hopes to study business or information technology at either UCT or Stellenbosch University. “I have always wanted to show a determination, discipline and dedication in my academic work,” she says. “There are options out there, though it will not come easily without hard work.”

To her peers, she says, “No matter what you face or what challenges you encounter, keep your head in your game, keep your heart focused, anything is possible with hard work.”

Mwai adds, “We have good days and bad days, we have bad months and good months, don’t stress too much on those bad days, the good days will come, you can have your achievement if you have your goals.”

Principal Nicolene Abrahams says all pupils can excel if they put their minds to it. “Be the best you can be; do the best you can do. Focus on your strengths you will definitely succeed. Remember we all will experience challenges no matter how young or old we are. These challenges are there to make us stronger as individuals.”