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Learner with special needs aces matric

15 Mar 2021

Simukele Ngema

A 20-year-old learner from Meadowlands, Soweto with athetoid cerebral palsy got three distinctions in his 2020 matric results and is now considering furthering his studies as far as the United States.

Katlego Legotlo was one of the best performers at Hope School in Randburg. His distinctions were in life orientation(LO), mathematical literacy and Afrikaans. His other subjects were history, business studies, English and computer application technology.

“I’m very proud and grateful for the results that I managed to obtain,” Legotlo told ThisAbility newspaper. His plan is to complete a higher certificate in entrepreneurship in 2021, and then in 2022 enrol for a bachelor of law at either Wits University or the University of Cape Town, or a degree in business and political economy in New York.

Because of the athetoid cerebral palsy, Legotlo needs a scribe as due to poor muscle control, he cannot hold a pen. The involuntary, uncontrolled movement of his head makes it difficult to focus on a text, necessitating a reader to convey information to audio. Legotlo needs a caregiver in order to help him with daily routine needs such as bathing, eating andgoing to the restroom.

Mmatsela Kobe, who was Legotlo’s LO teacher, toldThisAbility that “I will be forever grateful for having Katlego as my student. He has been one of the top achievers since I have known him.” Kobe added that she admires Legotlo for having big dreams. “Our learners did the best and we got 88% pass rate. The good thing is that the quality of their passes was amazing,” Kobe said.

Legotlo obtained his primary school education until grade 6 at the Forest Town school before moving to Hope.

His mother, Phumzile Legotlo, said “I’m ecstatic, really overwhelmed with joy. I know that Katlego is a living testimony that God is always with those who put their trust in Him.” She added that her son didn’t want to go back to school when the country moved to lockdown level 3 in July 2020, and she had to encourage him to go back, saying he had nothing to lose.

Legotlo’s message to this year’s matric learners is that, “I know that this year won’t be easy because the academic calendar already begun late. So, I encourage the class of 2021 not to let the external, unexpected pressures to stop them from doing their best and moving forward with their lives.”



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