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The Horse's Mouth
Thomas More College
News from the Horse's Mouth
 22 August 2016
Newsletter 26
Letter from the Editor

Please find the Scripture for the week here.


    Some points of particular interest in the expanded sections below include:
  • Shane Cuthbertson -  whilst in Australia, shares some news on the International Confederation of Principals' Council meeting he is attending, and congratulates the Primary School on a magnificent play last week.
  • Dave Wiggett -  wishes our Grade 12s a deep sense of calm, focus and quiet confidence as they head into these examinations, and safe travels to our Grade 8-11 pupils and staff as they embark on their Grade trips this week.
  • Barbara Taljard - congratulates sporting teams who played and won their games this weekend. Congratulations also extend to Saien Moodley on his Mathematics achievements, as well as to the cast and staff of Frostbite - a most successful and ambitious performance, you did yourselves, and your school proud! Well done.
  • Deni Hornsey -  children acting out? Following some of these tips may help...


150 Club Draw (Parents’ Council Fundraiser)

Congratulations to Ms Webster, mum of Caden Webster in Grade 0, who is the lucky 150 Club draw Winner for Term 2.  Ms Webster wins a term’s free school fees. We thank her for her support.


Lift ClubsLift club

If you would like to join or create a Lift Club email the TMC Lift Club to become a member.  Please note the school does not manage these lift clubs, but rather puts you in touch with other families who are looking to join or create lift clubs.


Waterfall/Hillcrest Bus

Limted seats are available on our Waterfall/Hillcrest Buses (mornings only).  Contact Kim Hooper for further info or click on the link for an application form.


Westville Bus

Contact Mrs Morgan for further info on our Westville bus (mornings and afternoons) or click on the link for an application form. 

Editor Picture

Have a great week,
Kim Hooper
Marketing Manager

The Thomas More Education Trust

The Thomas More Education Trust is an initiative of Thomas More College and works in partnership with the College. The Trust is registered separately as a non-profit (NPO) and public benefit organisation (PBO) and runs independently of Thomas More College. The Thomas More Education Trust has already seen a number of pupils through Thomas More College and on to tertiary education, as well as a number of teacher interns and assistants.


The objectives of the trust are: 

  • Funding of primary, secondary and/or tertiary education of previously disadvantaged South Africans;

  • Funding of South African teacher internships;

  • Creating a financial conduit through which current pupils of Thomas More College may demonstrate their social responsibility and participate in the general educational upliftment of previously disadvantaged South African communities;

  • Providing short-term financial assistance to deserving pupils of Thomas More College.


The Thomas More Education Trust offers donors an opportunity to become involved in the upliftment of previously disadvantaged individuals and communities. Donations primarily provide education to previously disadvantaged South African children, but also support Black teacher interns and, in certain selected cases, provide short term financial assistance to existing pupils. The trust is a well-managed, controlled and audited conduit for investment in the future of South Africa through the education of our children.


An investment, made by donors to the Trust, entitles businesses to:

  • A tax deduction;

  • BBBEE points in the Socio-Economic Development category.


Should you wish to support pupils or teacher interns in need, please contact Claudia Levarelli, the Thomas More Education Trust secretary, on (031) 764 8646 or who will furnish you with all necessary info.


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Whole School Events Calendar

Scripture for the week

Scripture"Give, and it will be given to you. A large quantity, pressed together, shaken down, and running over will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use, you will be measured." Luke 6:38

I think we all find trying to get children out of bed at 5:30am and to organise the family for school and work in the morning has its own special challenges!!! Although it sometimes overwhelms us, living in a family, does give us an understanding (I believe it’s how God intended it to be) in dealing with people in our daily lives. If anything having a family baits out of us any feelings of selfishness within us and selfishness is the one thing that seems to destroy relationships better than any other human trait. Throughout the Bible it constantly reminds us to be unselfish and generous with what we have as it reflects the nature and character of God . As Jesus states in John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have eternal life”. In God’s economy it is always better to give than to receive being unselfish is hard and often demands we sacrifice our own pleasures for others. But in doing so we will find out the truth in the scripture above.

Shalom (peace)
God bless
Rev. Martin Easson

Whole School News

This week I am fortunate to be the South African delegate at the International Confederation of Principals annual council meeting in Perth, Australia. The focus of debate is on how we can promote and improve leadership in schools around the world. Ultimately we all face the same challenges and it is wonderful to be part of the sharing of ideas.

We have had presentations from the vice chairman of Microsoft, the Australian Minister of Education and Aboriginal Affairs (an unusual combination), and the past Premiere of Western Australia. Clearly education systems around the world are very diverse and this is a wonderful opportunity to hear how other countries have found solutions. Australia state schools often have better resources than independent schools and unlike in South Africa, attending a private school is not necessarily regarded as a privilege.

There is no doubt that our top South African Schools are world class and by international standards very affordable. Thomas More parents who accompanied the sports tour to the UK have said to me on more than one occasion that TMC's facility's were as good as, if not better than the top schools that we played against.

The extreme renovation of the Grade 7 block will commence on 19th of September. While the High School and Foundation Phase have had considerable development in recent years, the Senior Primary has seen little development. These renovations will see a second story being built on top of the existing three rooms. Store rooms will be added as well as three additional classrooms. This is not intended to increase the enrolment but rather to provide specialized venues for subjects that are currently being taught in the general rooms.

Congratulations are due to the SP on staging a magnificent production of Frostbite last week. It has received much praise and was way beyond anything that we could have expected from a Primary School. I was very proud.  


Shane Cuthbertson
Executive Principal

High School News

Our Grade 12s have commenced their trial examinations. I actually find it quite futile when folk wish others “Best of luck” for their examinations. I can assure you that luck has nothing to do with the success equation. What I do wish for our children is open minds and hearts, effective preparation, calm heads and a sense of personal purpose as they embark on this demanding academic exercise.

I want to see our staff and pupils engaging in academic partnerships which articulate (and focus on) the Learning Intentions of any given part of the Curriculum. I want our pupils actively engaged with where they currently are, where they need to be, and which strategies they can employ to get them there. Our educators and pupils must share a common language that underpins the learning experience at our school. I want our pupils to be the masters of their own “academic rudders”, thereby steering their own learning.

We all (us parents) come from a paradigm in which the teacher was the holder of knowledge and we were his/her supplicants, having knowledge poured into us. The winners were those who could remember the most; the rest simply plodded along, acquiescing to the system which told us if we were clever or “stupid”.

The single most dangerous factor faced by young South African children in private education today is that we feel compelled to “teach to” the final Grade 12 examination. Tragically, this makes sense – we are judged on our matric results. Parents want this; learners want this; educational managers are under pressure to achieve this; educators feel compelled to want this. We certainly know our newspapers, local press and mass media want this. And yet, within this academic rat race, how many of our children succumb to being Curriculum Casualties? They fall into an academic pit of being stuck. What we need to focus on collectively – parents, educators and learners – is the language and strategies of climbing out of the pit. Immediately, there are four strategies that come to mind:

  1. Brain (self - resilience)
  2. Book (self - resilience)
  3. Buddy (peer assistance - collaboration)
  4. Boss (educator assistance - collaboration)

This takes hard work. Hard work reaps rewards. Unfortunately, we all live in a world that provides immediacy and instant solutions, given our immediate access to data and connectivity. Solutions, however, take time, especially those which will endure and enjoy permanence.

According to parenting expert, Nikki Bush, “Frustration is the precursor to learning. If we as parents are too quick to swoop in and want to fix problems for our children when they fall or when they are frustrated with something, we take away the gift of learning.”

It is when we work things out in our own way, in our own language, that we learn them for life. I have often used my 1st team cricket players and 1st team hockey players to run coaching sessions with u14 boys in my previous schools. Without fail, this exercise yields the same results: the older boys are consciously engaged with their own skill set and understanding when forced to facilitate the learning of others. Every single boy remarked that their own skill set improved exponentially after having “taught” it to a peer. This holds true of when peers assist each other with getting “out of the pit” (step 3 above).

It is critical that we remind ourselves that for effective learning to take place, our educators must be viewed as FACILITATORS. They are facilitating learning. The New Edition of the MacMillan Dictionary defines the verb facilitate as “to make it possible or easier for something to happen.” Thus, while it is the core function of an educator to educate, it must be done in such a way that the actual learning is owned and internalised by the pupil. This makes for an Assessment Capable pupil, not a parrot. This is the highest ranked factor in John Hattie’s research into Visible Learning and Achievement: a pupil who is able to articulate where they are now, where they need to be and how they can fill the gap between the two, quadruples the rate of learning and achievement.

This is what I want for our educators and pupils. As the high school staff, we will host our own Academic Indaba on 10 October during which we will engage the latest trends in 21st Century teaching and learning.

I am significantly excited about where we are going.

Thus, Grade 12s, I wish you a deep sense of calm, focus and quiet confidence as you head into these examinations.

I wish our Grade 8-11 pupils and staff outstanding camps this week. May you all travel safely and represent our school at your respective destinations impeccably. May you also find time and space on camp to learn more about your own individuality and how to celebrate it freely.

Finally, renewed congratulations are extended Faran Steenkamp (Grade 8) who placed in the top 3 in KZN for the Junior Maths Olympiad this year! As such, he has been invited to attend the Provincial Awards Ceremony at the end of September. He is the only Grade 8 in the top 3. Faran, this is truly remarkable. Thomas More College is exceptionally proud of you, young man!



David Wiggett
High School Headmaster

Primary School News

Last week was very exciting, with children achieving both culturally and at sport. It ended with exciting matches on Saturday (our 1st team girls beat Westville 3-1 at hockey and our 1st team boys’ hockey won 2-0. Our soccer games against Westville were also competitive and it is good to see the progress that has been made ) and our marimbas participated in the Marimba Festival at City Hill. We were also very proud of our athletes who took part in the Athletic Ward trials and did well, this despite the limitations put on them due to our Cultural and other sporting commitments and the short weeks! Thanks to parents who helped with transport and who supported us.

Sincere congratulations to our Cultural Team headed by Gary Balarin with our two musical directors, Roberta Ramasamy and Candice Mordecai- Jones, on our school musical, “Frostbite” as well as to all our pupils, especially our Grade 7s, on a most successful and ambitious production. Thank you too to our whole SP team- staff, parents and even extended family members on the phenomenal support and commitment in enabling us to do justice to this complex production! The conceptual depth, technical complexity, choreography and genuine involvement of our whole Senior Primary were noteworthy- and spectacular! It has been rewarding to see the camaraderie and teamwork, and also to uncover some acting, dancing and singing talent we did not know existed! It has also thrilled us as teachers to see how many have grown in confidence and maturity and how well the grades have bonded in the process. This will live on long in their memories and will be one of the inspiring highlights of their Primary School career. Thank you again to the many who assisted in so many various ways- teamwork is what it is all about!Saien

We are very proud of Saien Moodley (Gr.7, pictured right) and welcome him back after a successful trip to Thailand where he represented South Africa. at the Thailand International Mathematics Competition (TIMC). He was the top member ofthe SA junior team and the only one to receive a merit certificate. He also received a bronze medal for IMAS. Besides the Maths, he was exposed to a myriad of cultures and was left in awe of the beautiful sightsof Chiang Mai and Dubai. Congratulations on flying our TMC flag high!

As the Olympic Games drew to a close, one of the things that stood out for me was how those who ultimately succeeded had never given up but had worked hard and persevered, even against great odds. As we buckle down now to a stronger emphasis on academic matters and commitment, we trust our children will apply themselves in like manner to their studies.

In the words of Nelson Mandela, “Education is the greatest engine of personal development. It is through education that … anyone can become what he was intended to be…”

“It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.”

And also: “The greatest glory in living lies not in never failing, but in rising every time we fall.”

Wishing you all the best for a “normal" week ahead as we get back to our academic regime and rigour.


Barbara Taljard
Primary School: Headmistress

Foundation Phase News

We have one full week behind us and many more to come! Sometimes, with the busyness of school, children begin to “act out” and we wonder what the problem is. Often a good way to address this is not to see it as a problem, but rather a learning opportunity. Herewith, some food for thought:

1: Whining — How can that high-pitched little voice wield so much power? Let your little one know that you will listen when they use a normal tone and ask nicely, however, this won’t lead to them getting their own way.

2: Not Listening — What we really mean is that she/he doesn't do what she/he is told to do. Stick to the golden rule – parents speak once or twice and then there needs to be a suitable consequence. Don’t allow your child to fall into the habit of not listening by taking the easy route of “keeping the peace”.

3: Meltdowns — A meltdown is easy to predict when whining and continuous reasoning to prevent bad behaviour, isn't working. This is where putting in place consistent consequences will prevent these meltdowns.

4: Negotiation and Manipulation — When does negotiation stop and manipulation begin?

5: Morning Hassles, Mealtime Mischief, Bedtime Blues — Daily life can really wear us down. Stick to firm boundaries and expectations. Prepare your child in advance for the daily routine and when he/she resists, remind them of the routine as discussed.

6: Sibling Fights — Think 'relationships and skills' instead of 'whodunit.' What can we learn from this? Parents need to be fair and consistent. Ann Landers

7: Cleaning up and Chores — make the expectations clear. Reflect at the end of the day – this is a good time to help with time management.

8: Bathroom Battles — Sparkling hands and teeth without nagging. This routine is not negotiable – let’s get it done quickly and everyone will be happy.

9: Hurting — Hitting, kicking, pinching, spitting, biting, name-calling. . . Discuss appropriate ways of dealing with anger, hurt, frustration.

10: Bad Language — Potty talk, swearing…. Children will go through this phase. Make it clear that this is not socially acceptable. Sometimes taking away a privilege or treat works wonders if the initial explanation that this is not how we do things, doesn’t work.

Have a wonderful week.


Deni Hornsey
Foundation Phase:  Headmistress

Academic Achievements

Weekly Achievers



Hayden Vincent - for trying hard and for writing a fun and creative acrostic poem.


Tayla Summerford - for always showing initiative, being kind to others and for working on her organisational skills.  Great job Tay-Tay.


Zachary Bensingh - for excellent manners and for showing empathy towards his peers.  Keep it up.


Emma Heslop - for her kind and gentle nature as well as her willingness to help wherever needed.


Joshua Lobban - for trying to give of his best in all that he does.


Emily de Klerk - for the great effort she is putting into creating interesting sentences.


Simone Cairns - for her caring and compassionate hear.  She is very focussed and determined to give of her best.


Keith Anieto - for his effort and determination in his academics as well as his lovely manners.


Luyanda Shezi - for always having a good attitude and trying so hard.


Kaeuren Naidoo - for his extensive general knowledge and enthusiasm in class discussions.


Yandi Sibisi - for her positive approach to her school day and for her wonderful manners.


Jason Erasmus - for his commitment to his part in the school play.


Jaymee Lang - for her good work ethic and positive approach to her school work.


Saskia Munian - for being a polite, caring and helpful young lady.


Ben Shepstone - for settling in so well to Thomas More.


Vishal Nathoo - for his positive attitude and friendly nature.


Mandy Montague - for her quiet and gentle nature and her good manners.


Chloe Buchanan - for her continued hard effort and enthusiastic attitude.


Ella Mae Whiteford - for her focus and commitment and friendly manner.


Jessica Mills - for her continued hard work and dedication.


Michael Sim - for his positive approach to his academics and sport.


Abagility Maths Club Regional Championship

Congratulations to the following pupils who took part in the above mentioned Mathematics competition:

Matthew Mcpherson, Fun-Abagility 2 - Gold Medal

Vasilios Kapnias, Module 06 - Gold Medal - 1st Place Level & Age Group

Michaela Kapnias, Module 04 - Champion of Champions Trophy

Michaela made it through to our intense and nail biting Abacus Dictation Final round on the day. In the final, she was competing against 4 other children. Each sum called out to them consisted of 3 lines of 7 digit (millions) and 10 digit addition (billions) which were called out at lightning speed! She hung in there with focus and determination, and stunned us all with her listening and abacus skill. We are so proud of her incredible performance in this event!

Both Michaela and Vasilios have also been selected to represent KZN at the AMSASA Nationals Championship in Gauteng on 22 October 2016.  A great achievement for all our Mathematicians!




Congratulations to the High School Senior Marimba band on their performance at Epworth's Marimbas to the Max evening. They performed admirably and were a credit to the school. 


Sporting Achievements


Grace Brien received two medals and a highly commended pass in her recent modern dance Hip Hop exams.  Well done Grace.



Congratulations to Dayna Deeble who participated in a gymnastics competition at Pinetown Gym and received a 2nd place. Well done Dayna.

Congratulations to Mandy Olejniczak on being awarded her level 2 for gymnastics at the 2016 Provincial Festival and will now compete at the Inter-provincials. Well done Mandy.


KZN Judo

Congratulations to Conall Steenkamp for making the KZN Judo team to compete at SA Schools Champs in October. Well done Conall.


SP Hockey

Congratulations to Stephanie Tshuma and Hayden Brimelow who were chosen as 1st Team Hockey Captains and Chelsea Layden and Michael Sim as Vice-Captains. Well done to you all.


PADSSA Cricket

Congratulations to Hayden Brimelow, Imani Motsoahae and Michael Sim on being selected for the PADSSA U13 Cricket Team.  Well done boys.



Congratulations to Rachel Beyers who received a medal for completing the 5km Eston Mountain Bike Challenge.  Well done Rachel.



Congratulations to Erin Alexander who received a gold medal for KATA at the SKISA Karate Tournament this past Saturday.  Well done Erin.


Grade 1 Girls' Hockey Tournament

TMC 1 vs Kloof won 2-0

TMC 1 vs Winston Park won 2-0

TMC 1 vs Curro HCA drew 1-1

TMC 2 vs Northdene won 4-0

TMC 2 vs Kloof lost 0-2

TMC 2 vs Winston Park drew 0-0


Grade 1 Boys' Hockey Tournament

TMC 1 vs Kloof won 2-1

TMC 1 vs Northdene won 4-0

TMC 1 vs Curro HCA drew 0-0

TMC 2 vs Northdene won 4-1

TMC 2 vs Winston Park won 1-0

TMC 2 vs Winston Park won 3-2


Grade 2 Boys' Hockey Tournament

TMC 1 vs Northdene lost 0-1

TMC 1 vs Kloof won 1-0

TMC 1 Hillcrest lost 0-1

TMC 2 vs Kloof won 2-0

TMC 2 vs Winston Park drew 0-0

TMC 2 vs Highbury lost 0-2

TMC 3 vs Forest View lost 0-2

TMC 3 vs Northdene won 2-0

TMC 3 vs Atholl Heights drew 1-1


Grade 2 Girls' Hockey Tournament

TMC 1 vs Hillcrest drew 1-1

TMC 1 vs Curro HCA won 2-1

TMC 1 vs Forest View won 5-1

TMC 2 vs Northdene lost 0-5

TMC 2 vs Winston Park lost 0-3

TMC 2 vs ST. Mary’s won 3-0


Grade 3 Girls' Hockey Tournament

TMC 1 vs St. Mary’s drew 1-1

TMC 1 vs Northdene won 5-0

TMC 2 vs Northdene won 1-0

TMC 2 vs Winston Park drew 0-0

TMC 2 vs Kloof won 1-0

TMC 3 vs Kloof won 1-0

TMC 3 vs Forest View won 1-0

TMC 3 vs St. Mary’s lost 1-2


Grade 3 Boys' Hockey Tournament

TMC 1 vs Northdene drew 0-0

TMC 1 vs Forest View lost 1-2

TMC 1 vs Kloof won 2-0

TMC 2 vs Winston Park drew 0-0

TMC 2 vs Kloof drew 0-0

TMC 2 vs Winston Park won 2-0

TMC 3 vs Northdene won 4-0

TMC 3 vs Curro HCA drew 0-0

TMC 3 vs Forest View won 3-0


SP Boys' Hockey vs Westville

U10A: Lost 4-2

U10B-: Lost 6-0

U10C: Lost 5-0

U11A: Lost 3-0

U11B: Lost 3-0

3rd : Lost 3-1

2nd : lost 0 - 1

1st : won 2 - 0


SP Girls' Hockey vs Westville

U10A : 2 - 0 won

U10B : 6 - 1 won

U10C : 6 - 4 won

U11A : 0 - 5 lost

U11B : 1 - 3 lost

2nd : 0 - 1 lost

1st : 3 - 1 won


SP Boys' Soccer vs Westville

U10A : 0 - 2 lost

U10B : 0 - 4 lost

U11A : 1 - 5 lost

U11B : 0 - 2 lost

5th : 1 - 1 draw

4th : 0 - 2 lost

3rd : 1 - 1 draw

2nd : 0 - 0 draw

1st : 0 - 3 lost


HS Girls’ Soccer

TMC U14B 1 St. Mary’s 0

TMC U14A 0 St. Mary’s 1

TMC U16B 2 St. Mary’s 1

TMC U16A 0 St. Mary’s 2

TMC 2nds 0 St. Mary’s 3

TMC 1st Team 0 St. Mary’s 0

TMC 1st Team 0 Hillcrest 0

TMC 1st Team 2 Grosvenor 0

TMC 1st Team 1 Eshowe 0

TMC 1st Team 2 St. Benedicts 1

TMC 1st Team 1 St. Mary's 0

TMC 1st Team 0 Kloof 0 (Kloof won on penalties)

TMC 1st Team 3rd in PGHS Tournament


HS Boys’ Soccer

TMC U14B 0 Kearsney 6

TMC U14A 0 Kearsney 4

TMC U15B 0 Kearsney 3

TMC U15A 1 Kearsney 0

TMC U16B 1 Kearsney 7

TMC U16A 0 Kearsney 4

TMC 3rds 1 Kearsney 10ths 4

TMC 2nds 0 Kearsney 4

TMC 1st Team 2 Kearsney 2

TMC U14B 2 Hillcrest 6

TMC U14A 1 Hillcrest 2

TMC U15B 3 Hillcrest 3

TMC U15A 2 Hillcrest 0

TMC 2nds 2 Hillcrest U16A 0

TMC 1st Team 2 Hillcrest 1


HS Boys’ Indoor Hockey

TMC U14A 3 Northwood B 2

TMC U16A 4 Clifton 5

TMC 1st Team 4 Clifton 2


HS Girls' Softball

TMC 1st Team 13 Ridge Park 6


KZN Youth Duikers Rugby

Congratulations to Arno Swanepoel and Jaden Tite, who have been chosen for the KZNRU Youth Duikers U14 Rugby team to represent our province at the 2016 Interprovincial Tournament in Kempton Park from 1 – 9 October 2016.  Well done boys.


Tent Pegging

Congratulations to Joshua Mac Dougall, who competed alongside students from Highbury, St Mary’s and schools from Newcastle at the KZN Equestrian Tentpegging Championships in Newcastle this weekend.


Rock Climbing

The following climbers have been selected to represent Kwa-Zulu Natal at the Inter-Provincials in September:

Amy Freeman

Brendan Kuhnert

Faran Steenkamp

Ziyanda Mchunu

Josh Munsterman

Keshav Gounden

Daniel Bentley

Zunaid Valoida

Kim Dawson


KZN Softball

Congratulations to the following pupils who have been selected to represent KZN in their respective age groups:


Lola Lee

Jessica-Leigh Noziac

Alexa Vicent

Carmen Vicent

Kayleigh du Toit


Cailtin Redelinghuys