It’s not a secret that Covid-19 had a devastating effect on literacy and numeracy skills of primary school learners. This, together with a drop in volunteer numbers caused by various social and economic factors; lack of space in schools; reduced number of weekly sessions; and an increase in learner numbers, has meant that we had our work cut out for us to get back to “normal” in 2022.

We’re not quite there yet, but thanks to the grit and dedication of our team of volunteer centre managers we slowly built up our volunteer and learner numbers during 2022.

Literacy Results

The great surprise was that the average literacy improvement numbers per learner were better than expected (2022 – 31% vs. 2019 – 28%).

Onwards and upwards during 2023 to add more volunteers, open up centres on more days and be able to help more learners.

Numeracy Results

We are helping students who are not necessarily in strong mathematics. Overall 98% of our students showed improvement which is most gratifying.

Although we had more students in the lower levels with no or little sense of number, the improvement through to level 3 is most rewarding.

The improvement shown in individual centres like HA Jack, Orange Grove and Melpark is very pleasing.

2018 vs 2019

Due to Covid, our presence at the schools was disrupted for most of 2020 and 2021.  We hope to be able to run assessments again at the beginning of 2022.  Please refer to the 2019 results below.

Literacy Comparison

2019 Numeracy Results

This report presents the summary graphs for the testing conducted in Grade 2 and Grade 3 during 2019 in The Link schools. In 2019 the assessments, developed by Brombacher and Associates, were the same for both grades. This allows for comparison of performance across grades.

View the report here

The Link uses the Number Sense workbooks developed by Brombacher and Associates, to help develop the children’s numeracy skills.

“I believe that there are encouraging trends evident in the data collected and summarised in this report. As cautioned before, care should also be taken in assuming that the change in performance level from February to November is due to the activities of The Link alone. In the absence of a control group it is hard to know what part of the increase is the consequence of an additional year of schooling and what part is the consequence of the intervention. That said, the performance on the EGMA assessment is generally encouraging when compared with other data in the EGMA database (approximately 25,000 records) and I do hope that The Link team draws encouragement from this.”

Aarnout Brombacher – Brombacher and Associates, March 2019

The graphs in the report summarise the data for all the Link students (by grade) for 2019. It shows an improvement in the scores across the board, but of particular interest is the reduction of leaners who originally scored in the bottom two levels.