Pupil’s letter helps teacher win big

Yestel Lutchman with "superhero" teacher Perumal Govender

The award which honours teachers who make a difference in learners’ lives required pupils to enter teachers they deemed worthy and back their suggestions up with a motivation letter.

“My teacher and superhero, Mr Govender is a great role model who always aims super high to make our school better.  Since being here, the children in need have got all the things they are in need of including stationary, school shoes and uniforms. He makes a difference in the children’s lives and turns an unhappy face into a bright bold smile” said Lutchman in her letter.

Govender explained that he was surprised by the nomination and even more so by the victory.

“It’s a humbling experience to know that the children appreciate what you do for them. I don’t expect things like this to happen for teachers” said Govender.

Govender, who has been teaching for 32 years, said he was interviewed last month by a review panel and he emphasized the values a teacher was supposed to bring to a classroom.

“I believe that a teacher is morally obligated to enter the classroom with only the highest of expectations for each and every one of their learners. Thus, I believe in maximizing the positive benefits that naturally come along with any self-fulfilling prophecy; with dedication, perseverance, and hard work, I believe my learners will rise to the occasion.  I aim to bring an open mind, a positive attitude, and high expectations to the classroom each day. I believe that I owe it to my learners, as well as my community and society, to bring consistency, diligence, and warmth to my job in the hope that I can ultimately inspire and encourage such traits in the children as well.”

Govender walked away with R30 000 in Woolworths gift cards, R25 000 in cash, a brand new laptop and an all-expenses paid weekend away for two in Cape Town.

“We congratulate Mr Govender and Yestel, and hope that by recognising this superhero teacher from Pietermaritzburg on a national platform, the competition will continue to inspire schools and communities across South Africa to deeply value the wonderful difference that a great teacher makes in the lives of many thousands of learners” said Pieter Twine, Woolworth’s General Manager of Loyalty and MySchool.







Byrone Athman

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