I came to Treverton around 6 years ago and joined the IT Department. I soon realized that working in the education sector is very fulfilling and being a helping hand in the pupils’ lives as they go through their schooling years is a blessing. I enjoy the outdoors and spend my spare time fishing, walking my many dogs or even the odd computer game.

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My name is Buyiswa Mavis Mabi, and I was born here in Mooi River in Bruntville Clinic 1970.  I have been working at Treverton since 2013. I first started working at Burdett Boarding House and cleaned Mrs Tanner and Mrs Msimango’s classrooms. I also worked at the library. I enjoyed cleaning their classrooms because they are nice teachers. After that they needed me to help clean at the pre-school because I could speak English and could speak to the children. I enjoy working there with the kids and the teachers are very nice to me. I was married in 1999. I have three sons.

I moved to Estcourt in 2002 but last year on 25 May my husband passed away. Life is not easy for me but I am coping. I am now building my own house now and will move soon when my house is finished. This is also in Estcourt.


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My name is Derek Brown. Like a good number of past Treverton staff, I come from the Eastern Cape. It seems as if good imports from the Eastern Cape are necessary to keep the KZN staff from entering some sort of moral decline.

I have been at Treverton College since 2006 where I shifted into teaching by doing a PGCE. Until that point, I had been in the wildlife field having done my MSc on black rhino, working in the field initially in the Eastern Cape’s Great fish River Reserve, and then later in Tanzania and Zambia at the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and North Luangwa National Park respectively.

My move into teaching was motivated by a number of factors, but key to this is my belief that influencing people is very important. One of the best ways to do his is in education, where I would still have opportunity to engage in my love for the outdoors.

I teach Biology at Treverton, and I am also involved in the outdoor programs with a particular interest in the rock climbing, kayaking and Drakensberg hiking areas. I have also been the main organiser of the Grade 10 journey.

If I did not enjoy it at Treverton, I would have left some time back already. I still see much purpose in teaching here, and opportunity for personal growth. My time at Treverton has been marked by some key life phases such as my marriage to Kate, and the birth of our daughter Micaela 2 years ago. Treverton is a place of many fond memories for me.

While teaching a subject is important, the most important things is the teaching of values. This is because values are so often shaped by society, and, because society changes, so do most people’s values. But not so the values of God. They are the ultimate truths. Christ’s sacrificial death is an ultimate biblical truth from which all else should be examined. Only in this can education find its ultimate purpose.

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God has been good to me and I believe he has guided me into becoming a teacher. This profession has been my full-time occupation for 17 years, with the past five spent here at Treverton. I have a lovely and supportive wife, Jenna and three delightful daughters – Willow, Abigail and Joanna who keep me on my toes! My role at Treverton is to teach Geography and Physical Science. A quietly confident person, I live for defining pastoral moments with individual students where my desire is to share the love of Christ with them.

My teaching journey has led me down many exciting paths including a three year stint in south India and more recently an online locum at a school in Myanmar. I have a passion for missions and a desire to see the gospel spread. I enjoy travelling to new places, sport, getting out into nature, tinkering in my garage and reading a good book.

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I arrived at Treverton 16 years ago. A lot has changed for me and here at Treverton. In this time I have held 4 different positions at the Prep, gotten married and had 2 beautiful boys. I have worked under 4 different headmasters and worked with amazing colleagues, some of them are now like family to me.

I started out as an intern in 2005, already half way through my teaching degree. After completing my degree and qualifying as a teacher, I was fortunate to be offered a permanent teaching position. I taught Grade 5 for 8 years. An opportunity arose to teach Grade 6, and I embraced that wholeheartedly for a further 4 years.  I loved my time as a class teacher, but as advances in education and technology became an interest of mine, I saw an opportunity to start something more innovative. I approached John Huggett with the idea and he supported me all the way. This was the start of my STEAM journey. It has been a work in progress for the last 2 years and both the pupils and I have learned so much along the way. It has been so exciting to see what children are capable of learning and discovering when given a bit of freedom to pursue alternative learning avenues. I have felt so honoured to have been given the chance to develop STEAM in a safe and encouraging environment.

Over this time, much has changed, but the heart of what is Treverton is still true to the original mission set out by its founders almost 70 years ago.

As we navigate through the tumultuous times, we can stand steadfast on the assurances of God. He will bring us through this and make us stronger for it

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I am a truly passionate educator. Mathematics is often a subject that learners find challenging, but it is the most amazing feeling when they get it. And I love being part of that. I am a real animal lover too with a collection of animals at home. Family is a big deal in my life and I am very honoured to be part of the Treverton Family

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My name is Deanne Pennels, nee Bebb. I attended Treverton from 1995-2006 being the first ever Grade 1 class at Treverton and the last Grade 8 class at the Prep. Living in the Midlands and growing up at Treverton instilled a deep love for adventure and the outdoors, and after graduating from Varsity my husband and I lived in Thailand for 8 years and travelled to many places all over the world. We travelled the Great Ocean Road of Australia to the Sydney Opera House, Lake Taupo and the amazing volcanic town of Rotorua in New Zealand to Auckland, New York City to Lake Tahoe, Yosemite down the Pacific Coast Highway, The Grand Canyon through Colorado’s Rocky Mountains and to see the wolves of Yellowstone. We travelled all around Asia, from the Cities of Hong Kong and Singapore to the Ancient Temples of Cambodia, the Vietnamese War Museum to the Rice Terraces of Bali and of course the gorgeous beaches of Thailand. To see some of these natural wonders of the world, were some of the greatest moments of my life.

Now life has settled down to a totally different pace and different kinds of memories are being made as I am the Mom of two precious little boys and a darling adventurous little girl. My afternoons are filled with tutoring Maths to high school students, my other passion in life. I so appreciate the chance we had to live internationally, and to gain perspective and understanding of the world at large and to truly love and respect people from other races and cultures. It also provided an amazing opportunity to work with students at a top tier International School while completing my Teaching Certification.

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It is not always easy to answer the question: Who am I? I am a multitude of things to many people, I am a Daughter of The King, a mother and a wife. I am also a passionate teacher, avid sports lover, outdoor enthusiast and liberal thinker. I somehow do not always fit the mold of my profession and the perspectives others may have of my various labels…and I love it this way.

My “abnormalness” (for lack of a better word) began at school, when I beat the boys in most short distance running events and participated in 9 different sports over my high school years. Unusual for “a girl” certainly. But, therein lies my urge to fight the labels… who decided that “a girl” could not do all of these things. I am inspired by History as a subject, because it is by knowing where we have come from that we can best create a path for the future. History teaches us to analyse and understand the perspective of others, surely the world could do with more of this? History has the potential to create global citizens of substance and positive contributors to the currently broken and hurting world.
My other major is Physical Education, yes unusual again, I know. The quote by Kurt Vonnegut rings true here: “Enjoy your body, use it every way you can. Don’t be afraid of it, or what other people think of it, it’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.” Imagine if everyone treated their bodies this way, how different would our world and the confidence of people everywhere be?

My main aim in education is to change the life of ONE pupil, just ONE. One pupil that can openly say and confess “because of you I didn’t give up. Because of you I am a better person.” Coaching a team or a pupil is one of my greatest privileges. Coaching teenagers can be a complex, frustrating, yet highly rewarding experience. By being a coach a person is likely to impact more people in one year than the average person will in a lifetime. As an avid lover of the outdoors, it saddens me that some people have never, not for a day, slept in the bush and woken up to a sunrise. There is no place in the world that you can learn more about yourself and your relationships with others than in God’s splendour. In Job 12: 7- 10 we read, “But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.

Education is a challenging and ever-changing space. As a teacher you can be a hero one minute, and a villain the next. It is a calling and gift from God to shape young lives and young hearts to create a world that is better than the one we inherited and to help create the change we wish to see in the world.

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For most matriculants, it was a once in a lifetime experience; As we often say Treverton gives all round quality education. It is not different when it comes to languages. The itinerary included a trip to the Pavillion – watched a movie in line with their CAT work and film studies. We drove off to The Valley of a Thousand Hills to experience their rich culture. On arrival pupils were offered cold beverages to hydrate themselves before embarking on a 3-hour cultural tour. First stop was a trip to the river where boys were reminded how girls were asked out in the Zulu culture, when they came to fetch water. Next stop was to visit a Sangoma hut to hear all about how the ubizo, the calling, works and who gets affected by such. The last stop was at the Nduna’s house where our pupils were reminded how it works from when a young man from the village reaches manhood/adulthood to finding a fiancé with intentions to marry, being given (land) plot to build a family home.

There was a lot that correlated with our prescribed textbook. We were treated to a scrumptious dinner, slept in tents and enjoyed breakfast in the morning before heading back to Mooi River.

Xoli Mzinyane


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