Enhanced English Skills Open Doors for Kwazulu-Natal Students

CG Chisholm presents certificate to ACCESS graduate in Umlazi, Durban (State Dept)
CG Chisholm presents certificate to ACCESS graduate in Umlazi, Durban (State Dept)

On November 21, Consul General Frances Chisholm presented certificates to 19 grade ten students from Zwelibanzi High School in Umlazi who successfully completed the English Access Micro Scholarship Program (ACCESS).

ACCESS is a two-year program funded by the U.S. Government.  The ACCESS program at Zwelibanzi began in 2013 and was administered by “Talk English,” a Durban-based non-profit organization.   World-wide, the English Access Micro Scholarship Program provides a foundation of English language skills to talented 13-20 year olds through after-school classes and intensive holiday sessions.   ACCESS gives participants English skills that can lead to better jobs and educational prospects.  The program began in 2004 and is currently in 85 countries assisting more than 100,000 students.   ACCESS was launched in South Africa in 2007 and in KwaZulu-Natal in 2010 at the Chatsworth Education Center.

Speaking during a lively ceremony that included songs and poetry by students, CG Chisholm emphasized the importance of English as key to open many doors to both personal and professional enrichment.

Located in Umlazi Township South of Durban, Zwelibanzi was called “South Africa’s best high school” by University of Free State Vice-Chancellor Jonathan Jansen in a column in The Times newspaper in 2011.  Although hosting classes with as many as 80 students, Zwelibanzi had an 87 percent matric pass rate in 2013.