The John Wesley (then Junior Primary) School opened its doors to provide the first three years/grades of formal education in 1989 in the basement of the Pinetown Methodist Church. The Pinetown Methodist Church had built premises on the church property in 1979 for pre-school education which was started in the minister’s garage two years previously and by 1987 learners of all races were welcomed into the school which was registered with the Department of Education and Training, 2nd November 1989.By 1990, permission was obtained from the Natal Education Department for the John Wesley School to occupy the partially fire-damaged and abandoned Schools’ Psychological Services Clinic on the property known as Pineholme. Funds became available from donors including Anglo American and the de Beers Chairman’s Fund and restoration was commenced. During 1992 the application for Pineholme to be legally transferred to the Pinetown Methodist Church for educational purposes was successful and in 1995 those funders responded positively again and the Senior Primary was built.Further renovations, additional buildings, a hostel block and dining-room were completed by the end of 1999. Three new classrooms were built in 2007/8 and fundraising is currently underway to build a swimming pool as the children now walk to a nearby school with their swimming coach, to share their pool.As a non-profit organisation and ministry of the Pinetown Methodist Church, the school strives to keep fees as low as possible. In keeping with the Christian principles sustaining the school, John Wesley School actively engages in fundraising for a number of good causes, including East Coast Radio Toy Story and the Feed the Babies Fund. Rev. Ray Light founded the John Wesley School Bursary Fund, through which many learners have been awarded bursaries, including twenty learners this year.John Wesley School strives to provide the highest level of co-educational, broad-based education within a Christian environment. The school follows an NCS based curriculum, which is regularly assessed by the Department of Education. The School is Umalusi accredited, and is an ISASA (Independent Schools of Southern Africa) member. These organisations require that the highest levels of quality are maintained. Pre-Primary (Grade 000 to Grade R), Junior Primary and Senior Primary (Grade 1 – 7) phases are available, as is Aftercare, and Homework Assistance. Individual learners’ progress is well monitored through the provision of small classes. Lessons are taught in English, and IsiZulu is taught at a First Language Level. John Wesley School is one of few schools in the area with an LSEN (Special Needs) unit, which caters for children with learning difficulties. A Full-time Remedial Teacher assists those learners who have difficulties with particular aspects of their learning. The Remedial Teacher also provides access to specialists such as an Audiologist, Educational Psychologist and Speech Therapist. A Reading Room is used to do regular reading assessments for all Grade 3 to 7 learners. The boarding establishment is open to learners from Grade 4, an especially welcome facility to learners from distant areas of South Africa and Africa. The extracurricular sporting programme is run by a specifically designated Sports Co-ordinator. The success of a current Grade 6 pupil in the National Athletics Tournament in Germiston this year bears testimony to the school’s sporting accomplishments. Ultimately, John Wesley School endeavours to produce mature citizens that strive to reach their full potential.That past pupils continue to bring their own children to John Wesley School, is a telling tribute to the levels of excellence and remarkable ethos of the school.
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