HISTORY OF THE PIONEER SCHOOL

The blind person has always been part of mankind, but has not always been part of society. For centuries the blind person has been marginalized by society. The care and responsibility for the blind person has always been the responsibility of the family.

GESKIEDENIS VAN DIE PIONIERSKOOL

Die blinde persoon was nog altyd deel van die mensdom, maar nie noodwendig deel van die gemeenskap nie. Vir eeue is die blinde persoon deur gemeenskappe op die kantlyn geskuif. Die versorging van die blinde persoon was maar altyd die verantwoordelikheid van die familie.

  • The first school for the blind was established in 1784 in Paris, France.
  • In 1877 two ministers of the Dutch Reformed Church, Pastor William Murray of Worcester and Pastor Christiaan Rabie of Piketberg, became aware of the special needs of deaf and blind children in their congregations, as well as in the greater South Africa.
  • In 1881 “Het Doofstommen en Blinden Instituut” was established in Worcester, which paved the way for the education of the blind. This was the beginning of the meaningful integration process of the blind into society and the workplace.
  • The first teacher entrusted with the educational needs of these learners was Mr Jan de la Bat. Lenie du Toit was the first ever learner and was followed within two months by 7 co-learners, of whom one was blind.
  • After 25 years it was found that the differences in teaching methods, determined by the diverse needs of the disabilities, necessitated the establishment of two separate schools.
  • By the end of the 19th century music training and handwork were established as main focus areas. A need for baskets in the local agricultural sector led to the training and further development of cane weaving.
  • The academic programme with special adaptations was developed, and very soon the blind child followed the National Curriculum as offered in mainstream schools throughout the country.
  • The school has developed into a leader in the field of education for the blind and partially sighted learner. Braille Printers, nowadays Pioneer Printers, was established to produce literature and learning material for the visually impaired.
  • In 1981 the name of the school changed from School for the Blind to the Pioneer School.
  • During the course of many years, many dedicated men and women were involved in the development of the education for blind learners.
  • Die eerste skool vir blindes is in 1784 in Parys, Frankryk gestig.
  • In 1877 het twee predikante van die Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk, dominee William Murray van Worcester en dominee Christiaan Rabie van Piketberg, bewus geword van die spesiale behoeftes van die dowe en blinde kinders in hul gemeentes, sowel as in die res van Suid-Afrika.
  • In 1881 is “Het Doofstommen en Blinden Instituut” in Worcester gevestig, wat die weg gebaan het vir die opvoeding van blindes. Dit was die begin van ‘n betekenisvolle integrasieproses van die blinde in die gemeenskap en werkplek.
  • Die eerste onderwyser aan wie die opvoedkundige behoeftes van hierdie leerders toevertrou is, was mnr Jan de la Bat. Lenie du Toit was die heel eerste leerder, maar binne twee maande het 7 ander by haar aangesluit, van wie een blind was.
  • Na 25 jaar is bevind dat die verskille in onderrigmetodes, soos bepaal deur die diverse behoeftes van die gestremdhede, die stigting van twee aparte skole noodsaak.
  • Teen die einde van die 19de eeu is musiekopleiding en handwerk as die vernaamste fokusareas gevestig. Die behoefte aan mandjies in die plaaslike landbousektor het gelei tot die verdere ontwikkeling en opleiding in rottang weefwerk.
  • Die akademiese program is met spesiale aanpassings ontwikkel, en baie gou het die blinde kind die Nasionale Kurrikulum gevolg wat in hoofstroomskole dwarsdeur die land aangebied word.
  • Die skool het ontwikkel tot ‘n leier in die veld van opvoeding aan die blinde en swaksiende leerder. Brailledrukkers, deesdae Pionierdrukkery, is in die lewe geroep ten einde literatuur en leermateriaal aan die visueelgestremde te voorsien.
  • In 1981 het die naam van die skool verander van Skool vir Blindes na Pionierskool.
  • Baie toegewyde manne en vroue was oor baie jare ten nouste betrokke by die ontwikkeling van onderwys aan blinde leerders.

Past and present Principal(s):

  1. Mr BJG de la Bat – first principal of “Het Doofstommen en Blinden Instituut”
  2. Mr MJ Besselaar – first principal of the School for the Blind after separate schools for the two disabilities were established in 1905.
  3. Dr PE Biesenbach – 1929
  4. Prof Theo Pauw – 1961
  5. Dr JH van der Poel – 1979
  6. Dr PJ Botes – 1996
  7. Mr PH Pettit – 2005
  8. Mr PA Greyling (Acting Principal July 2006-2008)
  9. Mr HF Mentz – 2009 – 30 March 2011
  10. Mr PA Greyling – current principal as from 1 April 2011

The school currently caters for learners with special educational needs in 2 focus groups, viz visually impaired learners and visually impaired learners with multiple barriers to learning which include deafblind learners.

Voormalige en huidige Prinsipale:

  1. Mnr BJG de la Bat – eerste prinsipaal van “Het Doofstommen en Blinden Instituut”
  2. Mnr MJ Besselaar – eerste prinsipaal van die Skool vir Blindes nadat twee aparte skole vir die verskillende gestremdhede in 1905 gevestig is.
  3. Dr PE Biesenbach – 1929
  4. Prof Theo Pauw – 1961
  5. Dr JH van der Poel – 1979
  6. Dr PJ Botes – 1996
  7. Mnr PH Pettit – 2005
  8. Mnr PA Greyling – waarnemende prinsipaal Julie 2006-2008
  9. Mnr HF Mentz – 2009-30 Maart 2011
  10. Mnr PA Greyling – huidige prinsipaal vanaf 1 April 2011

Die skool bedien tans leerders met spesiale opvoedingsbehoeftes in 2 fokusgroepe, naamlik visueelgestremde leerders en visueelgestremde leerders met meervoudige leerhindernisse, wat doofblindheid insluit.