Johannesburg - Dineo Malaza says long walks with her sister and playing games with her family helped her get through her matric year. She says the news surrounding matric results in the media and pressure from friends did cause her anxiety.
Dineo has done well this year after achieving impressive results from her hard work last year.
She obtained six distinctions –Afrikaans (first additional language), maths, life orientation, information technology, life sciences and physical sciences.
Malaza, who only joined Parktown Girls High School in 2020, said it was quite challenging to adjust, especially because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“As a result my marks didn't reflect my capabilities. During my Grade 12 year, I pushed myself to finish strong and as a result, I managed to receive Academic Honours which is awarded to students who have achieved an average of 80% and above, and who have previously been awarded Full Colours,” she said.
She said that this was the highlight of her school career, and something she took only two years to do, a feat most pupils take 5 years to accomplish.
She said that what she will miss most is the close relationships pupils have with their teachers.
“Teachers went as far as giving us their cellphone numbers so that we could contact them after hours. I think that this really does show their commitment to teaching and the positive effect that they have on us,” said Malaza
She said during her 12 years at school she had been exposed to different people and differing points of view which had helped her to grow.
“I can only hope for the best as I prepare to make the transition into university,” said Malaza.
Malaza said that she was grateful to her family who made sure that she had a positive environment that would breed success.
“My parents ensured that my chores didn’t overlap with my studying. Whenever I didn’t do well in a test, and I went back home feeling down, they would always tell me that I would do better in the next test. I thought that they didn’t understand my anguish but then I realised that they have been there throughout my entire schooling career and they know what I am capable of and so they meant it when they said I would do better in the future,” she said.
She said that she would like to study computer science at UCT but says that Wits University was another option.
“I decided to study computer science because of the amount of mathematics that is incorporated in the discipline. I’ve always had a passion for mathematics and I know I will enjoy a science that applies mathematics to the real world and one that will contribute to the digitalisation of the world in the future,” she said
She has some advice for pupils heading into their matric year, saying it is not all smooth sailing.
“There will be times when you feel like you won’t be able to accomplish your goals. In times like these, I would always remind myself of the end goal: success. Remind yourself of why you started in the first place and that will give you the push you need to keep on going,” she said.