Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

As a parent and a pupil, there are many questions you ask yourself when deciding on the right school in Gauteng.

At Newton House School, our aim is to provide clarity so that you may confidently make a decision. A list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) is listed below, ranging from the differences in assisted and remedial classes to affordability and payment options.

How does Newton House School help my child ?
My child has not had a positive school experience. How will Newton House School change my child’s perception of school?

Our greatest asset is our teachers. Teachers at Newton House understand that children are all different and they often learn differently as well. Our teachers have the patience to re-explain concepts and spend one-on-one time with pupils whenever feasible. Support classes are provided as part of the extramural curriculum to provide additional time for this. The smaller class size also provides a platform for more teacher-child interaction, allowing teachers to keep a close eye on what each child is producing in a lesson and monitor concentration levels. Children are not able to hide the fact that they have not understood something, and this can then be re-explained immediately.

What education format is best for my child?
What is the difference between Remedial Education and Assisted Learning?

Remedial Education is largely a very individualised study path aimed at working on the specific difficulties experienced by an individual pupil. Assisted Learning (as offered at Newton House School) allows a pupil to follow a more generalised curriculum with wider content knowledge acquired while assistance is offered within a smaller classroom environment. In other words, all children in the classroom will be studying the same content (as it happens in mainstream schools), but extra attention is offered to each pupil as a result of smaller class numbers.

Many remedial schools also do not offer extensive extramural programmes. Newton House School, however, has an extensive programme offering cultural and sports activities and we participate very successfully in interschool competitions.

What is a bridging class and how does it differ from the assisted learning offered at Newton House School?

A Bridging Class is a specialised class found in a mainstream school that aims to address the difficulties a child experiences in a larger class environment without the child having to move schools. The challenge faced with bridging classes is that pupils assigned to this class are often seen as being ‘different’ or requiring special attention by the other children in the school. At Newton House, however, pupils are surrounded by friends who are just like them, lessening the chance of stigmatisation developing. Most Bridging Classes are mixed grade classes. This results in less teacher focus time than even a main-stream school.

Why should I consider Newton House School as an assisted learning option for my child?

Please have a look at our Why Newton House page where we have highlighted why our school is different and more beneficial to your child than some of the other schooling options you may be considering.

What is the academic focus?
What curriculum do you follow?

We follow the CAPS curriculum as set by the National Department of Education. Children who stay at our school until Grade 12 will write the NSC (National Senior Certificate) final examinations.

What do the following two acronyms means?

CAPS : Curriculum Assessment Policy Statements – This acronyms is used to refer to the National Curriculum that 96% of South African school children are taught with.
GDE: Gauteng Department of Education

Will my child be able to go to university after completing Grade 12 at Newton House?

Yes, Grade 12 students write the National Senior Certificate Examination. Depending on the type of pass a student obtains, they will be able to enter into university. If a child earns a Diploma Pass on the GDE Matric Examinations, they will gain entrance into South African universities.

Will my child be able to apply for university entrance after studying at Newton House?

This answer is two-fold. Certainly, the combination of subjects offered in the high school allows for a child to achieve a university entrance pass in their final year of high school. However, the academic requirements for admission of each university, and even within faculties of the same university, are set by the universities. Consequently, your child’s acceptance will be based on the results they produce in the final examinations.

My child does not do his homework and never utilises his homework diary. As parents, we feel ‘lost’. How can you help?

We place the student on a ‘Homework Tracker’, which ensures students take responsibility and homework is complete. The ‘Homework Tracker’ involves both student, parent and teacher, keeping everyone in the loop of daily tasks.

Please provide more information on the school?
What is the history of the school?

Dr Herbie Staples, Headmaster of Newton House school, reflects on Newton House’s History:

“I was one of the founder members of Trinityhouse School. I was privileged to work there for 14 years, at which point I retired. Prior to my retirement, I realised that I am not well suited to being retired and therefore started thinking about what my next adventure in life could be. My retirement occurred at the end of 2011 and I used the first few months of 2012 to expand on my dreams.

I had for many years prior to retirement realised that children who struggled with learning had very few places that could provide them with the help that they needed. I have for decades had a soft spot for pupils who battle in school (those who are highly anxious, who battle with Mathematics or languages, who struggle to write tests or examinations) and realised that there was a golden opportunity to open a school that would effectively deal with these needs. I immediately started the exploratory process and the process of acquiring a property so that the school could open its doors.

The school opened in 2013 with 42 children enrolled. Our intake grades were all in the primary school and the staff complement comprised of 5 teachers plus 1 administrative genius and me. The call made to open such a school was very well supported by the therapists in the area and by the community. Our school grew visibly from the word go. By the beginning of 2014, we had 134 pupils, in January 2015, 205 pupils and in January 2016, 262 pupils. We opened in 2018 with 362 pupils. Our school is no longer only a Primary School, but since 2015, we have opened up a High School division, which has grown to 99 students.

Newton House School is a full-orbed holistic school that teaches according to the National CAPS Curriculum and provides all the other emphases that a good mainstream school would provide. It’s no wonder then, that in the last two years, the school has needed to buy four additional properties to cope with its rising numbers. Newton House School has an exciting future ahead.”

What is the school ethos?

A sound culture of school pride begins with the wearing of the smart Newton House School uniform. Children are taught to know and respect the rules of the school, which emphasise respect for self and others as the building blocks of success.

Is Newton House School a Christian school?

Newton House School is open to all children. Christianity is, however, the worldview of the founders and will consequently be taught and practised at the school. Pupils from other faiths will be respected, but no pupil will be exempted from any religious observances or ceremonies of the school. All religious ceremonies and school assemblies will be Christian in nature and content.

Sports & Culture
What does Newton House provide in terms of extra-mural activities?

Newton House has a full range of extra-mural activities. We feel lessons learned outside class are very important and complimentary to the lessons learned in the classroom. Please follow the link to our page which explains this in more detail.

Does Newton House compete against other schools in sporting events?

Newton House enters into a league for a number of extra-mural activities. For the Preparatory school, we offer Swimming, Soccer, Netball and Cross-Country Leagues, and for College we offer Spur Mountain Bike, Soccer, Tennis and Cross Country Leagues.

Boarding at Newton House School
What if I do not live in the Johannesburg area, but my child requires an assisted learning environment to thrive?

We are able to assist you both with transport to school and boarding facilities for College boys.

We currently have school buses which fetch children in the morning from Fourways, Hyde Park, Bryanston and Blairgowrie.

Please see more on our boarding facilities.

Please provide more information on admissions?
What is the admission criteria for the school?

As the school implements the CAPS Curriculum, the criteria for admission is that the child must be capable of benefitting from the education and small environment offered at Newton House School.

  1. Newton House School specialises in helping children with specific learning disabilities, who have the intellect to progress towards Grade 12 and write the National Senior Certificate Examination with the necessary support and concessions provided by the school. The school also accepts children who do not have learning disabilities, but who are not ideally suited to large-scale learning environments. Certain families choose to place all their children in Newton House for convenience reasons, as the school offers a main-stream curriculum.

  2. Any application for admission received for pupils with specialised educational needs will be carefully considered by the Headmaster and/or Deputy Headmaster.

  3. Recommendations are based on the pupil’s profile and the level of support required. All the available information about the pupil, for example school performance, social interaction, family background and any other supporting documentation will be considered during the application procedure.

  4. To ensure that a pupil is correctly placed in Newton House School, we need information regarding his/her level of functioning, areas of difficulty that need to be addressed and medical history. Reports from their current school or any of the following professionals: Educational Psychologist, Occupational Therapists, Speech Therapist, Neurologists and other doctors, will be helpful for Newton House School to make an informed decision.

  5. The school is not equipped to address the following specific needs:

    1. Deafness
    2. Blindness
    3. Severe intellect impairment
    4. Severe physical disabilities (as the terrain is very sloped)
    5. Oppositional Defiance Disorder or similar conduct disorders
    6. Severe Autism
    7. Over-aged students who are no longer of compulsory school age

     

  6. The age norm for grades as stipulated by the Department of Education is generally adhered to.

  7. Non-South African citizens will only be accommodated at Newton House School if the following documentation or proof of application of this documentation is submitted:

    • Valid study permit (pupil)
    • Relevant residency permit (parents) or refugee status documents (refugee status does not qualify the applicant for exemption of paying school fees).
What is the application process?
  • If placement in the school is requested, parents will be engaged in an admission process. This involves a meeting with the Headmaster, Dr Herbie Staples. During such a meeting, the parents will hand in the latest school reports and any other intervention reports. The pupil does not attend this interview.
  • If there is a place in the school and the applicant is deemed to be suitable, an assessment will be scheduled in which the pupil will spend three consecutive days in the class to allow the teachers to assess him/her. There are no costs involved for this assessment. Pupils will come to school in their current uniform and/or civvies and bring along their school bag and a packed lunch. The pupils will be placed in an appropriate class for three days.
  • Should the teacher require additional time, the parents will be informed as soon as possible.
  • A parent interview is scheduled to give feedback.
  • The parents will attend a meeting with the Headmaster. If the child is suitable, he/she may start as soon as possible or at a time mutually agreed upon by the parents and the school. Only at this stage will the application form be handed to the parents.
  • An enrolment pack will then be issued to the parents with the relevant forms.
  • Should the pupil not be suitable for the school, the Headmaster will inform the parents accordingly and provide recommendations to them for the best suitable school environment.
What are the school fees/costs of attending the school?
What are the school fees?

There is a non-refundable admission fee for new admissions of R15 000. Payment of the non-refundable admission fee is required in order to secure a place for your child.

School Fees 2019:

Pre-Primary Grade 0 R91, 730
Junior Primary Grade 1 – 3 R104,270
Senior Primary Grade 4 – 7 R104,270
College and

Boarding Fees

Grade 8 – 11

Weekly boarding

Termly boarding

R113,377

R60,960

R73,500

Our school fee policy is as follows:

  • Fees are subject to an annual increase.
  • Fees are payable monthly in advance with effect from 1 January.
  • All other invoices are payable on presentation.
  • Overdue accounts will be charged interest at prime bank rate.
  • An admin fee of R350 will be charged on unpaid debit orders.
  • Any bank fees relating to cash deposits will be charged to the parents’ account. 

A Learning Assisted school, with its low student/teacher ratio, is expensive. It is of the utmost importance to fulfil your financial obligation towards the school. The school cannot provide the necessary service if parents do not honour this obligation.

Please take note of discounts, due dates, additional costs, etc. We suggest that you keep this document at hand for reference whenever questions may arise.

School fees are determined annually by the Board of Directors.

Are there any discounts/rebates available?

There is a rebate for early payment:

If annual school fees are paid on or before 31 January, a 5% discount will be allowed.

Sibling discount:

1st child  0% discount
2nd child  5% discount
3rd child and any additional child 10% discount

School fee discount policy for early settlement – multiple child families:

Non-refundable discount admission fee: R10 000 or at the discretion of the Headmaster. The non-refundable admission fee should be paid on or before the date of admission. No discount for early settlement will be given on the non-refundable admission fee.

Early settlement discount:

In the event of school fees being paid in full on or before the first day of school of each year, an additional discount of 5% will be offered. Please note that where a parent or family is granted a sibling discount and wishes to make use of the early discount, the early discount will be based on the fees after the sibling discount has been taken into account.

Can I claim school fees as a medical or disability expense?

Although the school advises parents to seek expert opinion via a tax consultant specialising in medical matters, many parents are unaware that there is a possibility of claiming school fees as a tax deduction. Please contact a tax practitioner for completing your tax return and claiming school and assessment fees.

For tax purposes, disability expenditure and physical impairment expenditure is governed by Section 18 of the Income Tax Act, NO 58 of 1962. A disability is defined by Section 18(3) means a moderate to severe limitation of a person’s ability to function or perform daily activities as a result of a physical, sensory, communication, intellectual or mental impairment lasting more than a year and certified by a duly registered medical practitioner.

In order to qualify for the full deduction of fees, pupils must have their disabilities confirmed by a duly registered medical practitioner who has to complete the prescribed form ITR-DD after the taxpayer has completed his/her part of the form. For further information, parents may obtain an information booklet from SARS website – www.sars.gov.za or contact their tax adviser.

What are the other costs?

Levies and school camps:

From Grade 0 – Grade 11, an annual amount of R300 will be invoiced to your school fee account to cover the costs of day trips and activities.

All educational camps must be paid for prior to the departure of the camp. Should the school fees be in arrears, these children will not be permitted to go on camp until the overdue school fees have been paid. Camp fees will be invoiced to your school account.

Printing and stationery levy:

From Grade 0 – Grade 7, an annual amount of R500 will be invoiced to your school fee account to cover the costs of printing and stationery.

College textbooks:

From Grade 8 – Grade 12, your school fee account will be invoiced to cover the costs of textbooks.

Therapies:

Therapies are not included in the school fees.

Notice period when leaving the school:

Three months written notice must be given or fees in lieu of three months.

Please give me information on my account, who to pay and when?