Pretoria Boys High School

MARCH 2014
Dear Parents/Guardians
The first term has passed us in a flash and the first fixture of the winter season has been played.
While I am a great fan of all sports, in winter the school seems to undergo a transformation with
boys becoming more focused on all that they do. I have no doubt that the sports of rugby and
hockey have much to do with this phenomenon as by far the greatest number of boys are actively
involved. The very nature of the games lend themselves to testing a boy’s character and
promoting teamwork and the “vibe” in the school is a very positive one indeed.
I share a few cautionary words to parents and supporters to ensure that your support is positive by
nature, setting the right example for our boys. Public criticism of coaches or players serves no
purpose at all and merely demoralises the team when all should be working together. Public
criticism of officials or opposition players has no place in the school at all and causes acute
embarrassment to all concerned. As a school, we play games hard but we play fair, winning with
dignity and losing with grace. If you have a cause for concern regarding your son and his sport,
the correct channels to use are through the coach, the teacher in charge of that sport, the Director
of Sport and then Mr Harvey, the Acting Deputy in charge of extra-murals.
SGB Elections
My thanks go to those parents who attended the by-election at which the five replacement parent
members were elected to the School Governing Body.
They are, with portfolios in parenthesis:
Mrs Elis Lefteris (Finance and Fund Raising)
Mr Mark Hassenkamp (Public Relations and Marketing)
Mr Krisjan Korf (Legal)
Mr Chris Lee (Boarding)
Mr Greg Slabbert (Finance)
Mr Martin Coetzee will be leaving the Parents Association at the end of the year and his place, ex
officio on the SGB as PA Chair, will be taken by Mr Ruben Chetty.
My thanks go to these parents as well for their willingness to serve the school and support the
school management team.
The SGB’s role is one of school governance and they carry the responsibility of oversight of
matters such as policy and funding. Their role is not in the management of the school as that task
is entrusted to the school management team. If parents have issues with academic matters or
concerns about sport, the facilities, boarding management etc, these must be raised with the
structures within the school and not with the SGB.
I wish the governors well for their term of office.
Building project
I share the very exciting news with all parents that at last the building project is to get under way.
The fund raising campaign, that was very successfully headed by Mr Bill Schroder, will be coming
to an end in June this year and we will be utilizing the funds raised to start renovations on the
school hall. Mr Schroder has done a magnificent job in raising over R25 million and he will be able
to enjoy his “retirement” with the satisfaction of a job well done.
The project will be officially launched next term and will entail the complete renovation of the
existing hall, the renovation of the two quads and the building of an extension leading to the
proposed new Media and Music Centre – the second phase of the project. This second phase will
need to be funded, hence the need to re-launch the campaign to attempt to find the balance of
funds needed to complete the project.
The management of the school during the building process, which is expected to take between
nine months and a year, will be interesting to say the least but we are confident that with patience
and understanding on the part of the boys and teachers, we can do it. It will not be easy to live
without a hall for that time, but we will have to make a plan. Exciting times indeed!
Public holidays
By now most parents will have noticed, either from my reminder in last year’s newsletter or by
looking at the term calendar, that the start of next term is severely disrupted by public holidays.
We return for a week, which includes the trip to Maritzburg College, and the following week ends
with the Easter Weekend. We return for a four-day week after that, followed by complete closure
of the school for the week of 28 April to 2 May. These holidays affect our academic programme as
intermittent breaks are never good for young boys and affect our extra mural programme as we
battle to find fixtures for our teams. I ask all parents to thus ensure that their son is at school for
the days in between these holidays as the normal programme will continue. We cannot give
permission for boys to be away from school in any case but particularly at this time we ask that our
boys are all at school.
In memoriam: Thabo Malatse
I write this newsletter just after preparing the words I am going to share with the boys at a special
assembly to honour the memory of one of our boys who tragically lost his life after being run over
by a motor vehicle while jogging. Thabo Malatse was a boarder at Rissik House for many years
before becoming a day scholar in his Form V year. He was a quiet young man, known mainly to
those who lived with him as one who just got on with life. He leaves behind his family, his mother
and sister who were particularly close to him, and the friends who knew him. We think of them in
these times and offer them our support and prayers.
Thabo is but one of hundreds of young people who lose their lives before their time in our country
through natural or unnatural causes. Each life lost is a tragedy we battle to understand as the
order in life becomes unbalanced. It is our responsibility, as those left behind in the aftermath of
death, to live our own lives to the fullest, being always grateful for the opportunities we are given
and the people we share our lives with. Let us never take others or the precious gift of life for
granted and let us keep in perspective those things we think are important as opposed to those
things that are really important.
Final thoughts
Once again, I was able to attend the annual conference of the International Boys Schools
Coalition, held this year in Cape Town at Wynberg Boys High. This was truly a magnificent
conference, and the opportunity to network with colleagues from other schools, state and
independent, was highly valued. Perhaps the highlight though was the quality of speaker, with
three that stood out for me as particularly memorable. These were Dr Max Price, the ViceChancellor of UCT who spoke about admission to university and how to succeed once in, Dr
Michael Thompson who spoke about raising boys and Ms Celia Lashlie, well-known author who
also shared her ideas on dealing with adolescent boys. Both Michael Thompson and Celia Lashlie
are known throughout the world as experts in their fields and you are advised to Google them to
see the profile they enjoy and read about their work.
As is my custom, I share some thoughts I gathered from the conference that will be influencing my
thinking as we deal with the ever-changing, complex environment that is the education of boys.
From Max Price:
 The integration of subject skills is far more important and single-track learning should be
avoided (i.e. choose diverse subjects)
 Examinations such as the National Senior Certificate and the IEB tend not to be good
predictors of university performance and universities use the Matric exam result combined
with the National Benchmarking Tests (in various weightings) as a better means of selection.
Other parts include extra-mural contribution at school including team sports, service given
and offices held. The NSC/IEB exams are a test at the end of a school career to test what
has been learned. The NBT is a test of future potential.
 Writing skills are crucial for academic success!!
 Plagiarism is rife and universities are penalising heavily those who “cut and paste” from the
internet (our school has a similar policy which we apply). Boys need to learn that the
gathering of information and re-presenting it as a collection of facts is NOT acceptable and is
NOT part of academic learning. There is no place for the non-critical consumption of
 Students should not choose careers then subjects but rather subjects first – the career may
not have been invented yet!
 Students engage in risky behavior, normally while under the influence of some or other
substance and their knowledge becomes at odds with their behavior – they know that what
they are doing is wrong or risky and they do it anyway. This is exacerbated by boys’
unwillingness to ask for help when in trouble.
 Successful students manage their time well and are less coached and more self-sufficient.
 Boys need to learn that all knowledge and all thinking is contestable!
From Michael Thompson:
 While there is no provable link between video games and higher levels of violence, violent
figures are heroic to boys
 Screen time has to be limited with boys. Fixation with screens and video games often is as a
result of a need to be in charge of something or someone.
 All 13-year-old boys are Buddhists – they live in the moment!! They also have no link
between action now and what the future looks like!!
 Exercise is critical for developing teenage boys.
 The male frontal lobe (the part of the brain that is responsible for decision-making) is not fully
developed until 25 years old.
 Boys lead with dominance and hide co-operative behavior. Girls are the opposite.
From Celia Lashlie
 A 30 second decision can change a boy’s life forever, sending him to prison or causing his
or someone else’s death. Boys take risks and parents spend their lives trying to minimize the
effect of the risky behavior.
 Grade 9s need to be physical and play
 A sense of humour is the top characteristic of a good mom
 Use silence as a means of communicating with your boy (sounds strange I know but try it)
 Avoid eye contact when having the difficult conversations. Try talking during a long car trip
rather when you both have to be looking elsewhere.
 Communicate in “bits” with teenage boys.
 Boys learn from watching adult men
 The absence of good rites of passage leads to bad ones.
Please feel free to discuss any of these points with me should we be standing together at a sports
match or in a social gathering. I have tried to explain as best I can, but may not have done a good
job. I highly recommend the research of the last two, Thompson and Lashlie, and suggest you look
them both up on their websites.
I came away from the conference highly satisfied with how we educate our boys at Boys High and
determined more than ever that we hold on to how we do the things that count as we work with
these wonderful young men in the making. Lashlie talks often about “turning gorgeous boys into
good men” – a wonderful phrase to keep reminding us what we are doing as teachers and
I wish you all a happy holiday.
Warm regards
The PBHS Pipe Band play during the Pretoria Deloitte Marathon.
PBHS Pipers were asked to play at the TUKS vs Pukke varsity rugby match and the South Africa
vs Scotland Ladies Hockey.
Photographs from Mr R Blackmore.
Easter Holiday Sporting Activities
1st team at Grey High School Port Elizabeth for the Easter Rugby Festival Thursday 28 March to Wednesday 2 April
PBHS vs Kearsney
PBHS vs Hudson Park
29 March
31 March
2 April
U16A team will be attending the Jeppe Boys Festival Saturday 30 March to Wednesday 3 April
U14A team at the Parktown U14 Rugby Festival Friday 28 March and Saturday 29 March
1st team will be taking part in the Nomads Hockey Festival at King Edward VII (KES)29 March to 3 April.
U16A team will also be taking part in the U16 Nomads Festival at Wynberg Boys - 29 March to 3
U14A team will be taking part in the U14 Nomads Festival at Hilton College – 3 April to 6 April.
The 1st team will be taking part in the Durban High School tournament – 28 March to 2 April.
The 1st team will be taking part in the A.H.S. golf festival – 1 April to 4 April.
Maritzburg College Sporting Exchange - Friday 11 May 2014
Please note that there will be only two teaching periods on this day after which boys NOT involved
in the exchange will have two options:
Option 1 – remain at school until 13:00 under supervision.
Option 2 – Leave school at which point they become the parents’ responsibility.
If you choose option 1 for your son, please advise Mr Illsley as urgently as possible per email
([email protected]) noting your son’s name, grade and house. This arrangement may not
be changed after your communication.
Our warm congratulations go to the following boys:
Representative Council of Learners – 2014
RCL Committee: Chairman-Tumisang Malete; Vice Chairman–Aiden Malan; Secretary-Greg
Russill; Advertising Officer-Khabo Sechaba
Abernethy: Lulama Jennings (FV), Tshegofatso Lekabe (FIV); Siphesihle Manana (FIII); Phillip
Antoniades (FII); Yumin Kim (FI)
Arcadia: Sam Mukwamu (FV); Luke Adams (FIV); Michael Zaayman (FIII); Ningi Macheke (FII);
Lorenzo Carvalheiro (FI)
Armstrong: Keratile Mocheko (FV); Adam Harper (FIV); Thobekani Khanyile (FIII); Sebastian
Priest (FII); Riccardo Bicego (FI)
Hofmeyer: Tumisang Malete (FV); Neil Fair (FIV); Francois le Roux (FIII); Cameron Waterson
(FII); Alexander van Twisk (FI)
Matheson: Sechaba Khabo (FV); Gregory da Encarnacao (FIV); Edzani Kone (FIII); Lere Adewole
(FII); Rhys Milton (FI)
Rissik: Alan Goldacre (FV); Quinton Masemola (FIV); Andries Roos (FIII); Mpho Kubheka (FII);
Tshegofatso Motjuwadi (FI)
School: Greg Russill (FV); Timothy Thompson (FIV); Glen Thatcher (FIII); Geordie Collaros (FII);
Matthew Breckenridge (FI)
Sunnyside: Aiden Malan (FV); Jonathan Smith (FIV); Michael Manley (FIII); Ryan Mitchell (FII);
Ferdi van den Heever (FI)
Solomon: Jordan Frans (FV); Percy Mthimkhulu (FIV); Mfundo Dlamini (FIII); Zola Makongolo
(FII); Malunga Changwa (FI)
Town: JJ Mayoli (FV); Kimon Savvas (FIV); Nyoni Nyika (FIII); Sean Pelser (FII); Ethan Ford (FI)
Academic Colours
Half Colours
Form IV: Byron Antak, Mauritz Blignaut, Adrian Buffa, Michael Gous, Inus
Heymans, Christiaan Kleynhans, Michael Knoetze, Sean Pentz, Jeffrey
Russell, Daniel Southey, Thurston Stadler, Cameron Williams
Form V: Marthinus Erasmus, Jimmy Fischer, Alex Hsiao, Chamond Hwang,
Philip Immelman, Paul Kim, Garth Kircaldy, Tumi Malete, Kuda Maneta,
Karish Naidoo, Kimon Nicolaides, Jesse Parvess, Armand Pretorius, Kofi
Snaman (re-awards); Harry Burdett, Prashin Premchand Rocharam (new)
Full Colours
Sporting Awards
Half Colours
Full Colours
Full Colours
Half Colours
Form IV: Pieter Brune, Quintin Claassen, Michael de Nobrega, Hannes
Elsenbroek, Diaan Engelbrecht, Neil Fair, Grant Grobbelaar, Chris Hitchcock,
Alex Loubser, Rishay Rajkumar, Coert van der Westhuizen
Form V: Paul Burger, Justin Coetzee, Samuel Cohen, Winford Collings,
Robert Focke, Jandré Gerber, Viaan Janse van Rensburg, Seonggeun Kim,
Werner Reyneke, Llewellyn Strydom, Brandon van Veenhuysen (re-awards);
Rahiél Kirpal (new)
Form IV: Johannes Coetzee, Gerrit Dreyer
Form V: Wesley Benade, Rendert Hoekstra (re-award)
School House
Chris Hitchcock (re-award); Christopher Britz, Byron Lotter (new)
Daelon Campbell, Tyler Easton (re-award); Jake Blew, Donovan
Ferreira (new)
Matthew Joubert
Dylan Grobler, Keiran Kruger, Neil-John Lord, Jason Reynders, Dalton
Stocks, Keegan Stratford, Pablo Talbot (re-awards); Michael-John
Anderson, Dillon Cromhout, Evan Fair, Graeme Garcia Menendez,
Matthew Janse van Rensburg, Estevan Kühn, Sven Van Zyl (new)
Full Colours
Nick Duarte, Brendon Fekete, Grant Kingon, Neil McNerney, Duane
van den Heever (re-awards); Diaan Engelbrecht, Gerrit Hasenjager,
Grant Kingon, Bradley Scott (new)
Neil Fair (re-award); Marco Cameron, Dane Neeb, Ryen van Wyk
Inter-House Gala
Johannesburg A-League
Inter-High Gala
Pretoria A League
Pretoria B League
Affies Friendly
Cancelled due to rain
PBHS 2nd place
PBHS 2nd place
PBHS 1st Place
PBHS 2nd Place
PBHS 2nd Place
SA Champs
Form 1 Squash Champion
U19 Squash Champion
School Championships
Water Polo
Half Colours
Gerrit Hasenjager (3rd 50m backstroke); Evan Fair (3rd 200m butterfly)
Ryen Van Wyk (1st 50m breaststroke, 2nd 50m freestyle, 2nd 100m
Neil Fair (2nd 200m individual medley, 3rd 200m backstroke, 2nd 400m
individual medley)
Stefano Pitsillis
Cleelynd Potgieter
Francois Mellet (Junior); Jordan Sauer (Senior);
Full Colours
Kade Chapman, Quintin Claassen, Aiden Nunn (re-awards); Marthinus
Erasmus, James Neser (new)
Rupert Louw (re-award); Brett Giddy, Neil McNerney (new)
Sport Captains
Cross Country
Table Tennis
Water Polo
To follow in third term
Thabang Tefo
Keaghan Vryenhoek
Daelon Campbell
Armand Pretorius
Johannes Coetzee
Shane McLachlan
Pablo Talbot
Gideon van den Berg
Marko Fourie
Duane van den Heever
Robert Focke
Anthony Mickelsfield
Aidan Nunn
Cross Country
Junior Inter-House Cross Country
Senior Inter-House Cross Country
King of the Mountain Race
Form 1 Race
10km Classic Race
School House
School House
Armand Pretorius
Shaun Letsoala
Khanyisile Xaba
Peter Lennon
Form I Chess Champion
Allen Harding Swiss
Gideon Hoon
Gerrit Dreyer
Inter-House Plays
Tennis – Jordan Sauer participated in two Key Health Super Seven tennis tournaments and won
both in the Boland and in Pretoria. These are judged as the top junior tennis tournaments.
Judo – Brendan Pretorius won a gold medal at the 2014 Dutch Open Espoir Judo tournament
held in the Netherlands. This is the first time in history that a South African has won a gold medal
at this tournament.
Swimming – Neil Fair represented South Africa in the 15 & 16 years age group at the Junior
African Championships. He was placed first in the 200m backstroke with a new Africa record and
first in the 4 x 200m freestyle relay and 4 x 100m medley relay, both new Africa records.
Cricket – Dustin Melton was selected for the SA Schools B Team. Two of our Old boys, Aiden
Markram and Corbin Bosch, have been selected for the SA U19 team.
Athletics – Jesse Fröhling has qualified for the Gauteng North athletics team.
Eskom Expo (for young scientists) – Richard Grant and Neil Fair have been selected to
represent South Africa at the 7th International Sustainable World Project Olympiad in Houston,
USA in April.
Inter-House Gala
Inter-House Cross Country
The EGD Department is making good use of their 3D printer which was recently donated
to the school.
Photographs of the Café Concert by Samuel Cohen - Form V