Multigrade schools, defined as schools where one teacher teaches two or more grades simultaneously, are common in rural areas throughout the world.
The unfortunate reality is that these schools form the most neglected part of the education system. For the most part, they are located in isolated, low-income rural areas, and generally have untrained teachers. National curriculum contents, teaching and learning materials and activities taught at schools are frequently geared for monograde classes.
The result of untrained and inappropriately trained teachers, as well as lack of appropriate teaching learning materials, is that children in multigrade classrooms spend much of their time relearning material they already know or sit idle and boxed.
The Centre for Multigrade Education (CMGE) was established in 2009 through a grant from the Royal Netherlands Government to enhance the development of multigrade education solutions and to develop the capacity to make a significant difference in the chances of success for rural primary school children. The CMGE was approved as a self-governing and funded entity of the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) by its executive management (EM).
The picture shown is that of a multiGrade classroom in rural KwaZulu Natal.