Sherpa Kids Finalist in Basic Education Supplier Catagory at Eduweek 2016 

Genevieve Allen MD: Sherpa Kids selected as a judge for Eduweek 2017

  fasa awards    Team RSA
Centre : Sherpa Kids South Africa, runner up, Newcomer of the Year, at FASA Awards banquet, Apr 2015
Right : Sherpa Kids RSA and franchisees, Rene Kettle Owens, Louise Fourie (Centurion) and Surraiya Buccas (Emmarentia). Oct 2014

“Innovation often stems from simple solutions to obvious and on-going challenges” said Genevieve Allen - Managing Director - Sherpa Kids South Africa, speaker at upcoming African EduWeek on so-called “A Bomb” ….


Interview with Genevieve Allen, Managing Director, Sherpa Kids South Africa (Guest Speaker in Expert Interview Series at African Education Week)

Q: Please tell us more about Sherpa Kids and what you do?
A: Sherpa Kids specialises in Outside of School Hours Care (OSHC) - BEFORE school CARE, AFTERCARE and HOLIDAY CARE - currently operating in New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, England, Ireland, Canada and the UAE. Launched in South Africa in late 2013 (August), Sherpa Kids South Africa already operates in over 10 school sites in Gauteng, KZN and North West.

Established in 1996 in New Zealand, Sherpa Kids operates in over 160 primary schools globally offering an internationally benchmarked curriculum which is quality assured by leading childcare quality assurers. These includes CYFS in New Zealand, OFSTED in the UK and ACECQA in Australia.

Within Australia – all Sherpa Kids sites are accredited by Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority and the 7 quality areas that serve as benchmarks for standard setting, form an important part of our offering in the South African context

I was interviewed on CNBC. Please watch the video and gain deeper insights on the business model.

Q: Any exciting projects you can tell us about that you are part of?
A: Sherpa Kids is currently operates OSHC (outside of school hours care) services within some of the emergent new school groups in South Africa. These include the SPARK schools and Pioneer Academy. This month we are kicking off a service at Le Bone College II just outside Rustenburg. Summit College was an early supporter of Sherpa Kids. Many of the first schools to sign up with us are innovators within their sectors and we are proud to partner with them.

Q: What is the “A bomb”?
A: For most South African schools (on and off site) aftercare services have grown very rapidly as socio-cultural shifts within parent bodies have led to both increased demand and increasing demands. Most schools still offer a very basic “baby-sitting” service which is simply a bolt on to the core offer at the school but often not offered in line with the overarching high quality ethos present within the balance of the offers at the school. This “disequilibrium” creates the “A-BOMB” effect. A ticking time bomb of conflationary pressures: parents using the service on offer “without choice or voice”; teachers allocated to supervise the children without formalised structures and processes and children in these centres in “holding patterns” until collected.

The sector is not regulated or quality assured. Without standards or benchmarks – varying quality will prevail and within this critical sector cannot , on a systemic or sustainable basis, result in delivery that adds value.

Q: Any success stories/case studies?
A: Within our longer established international operations evidence exists of improved results for children as homework supervision is offered within a structured format together with activities which are linked to themes, activated through arts, crafts, music, drama, games, technology and cooking. This multifaceted approach enables children to learn in a fun, stimulating way in a critical time of day when children are really open to engagement and imagination.

The exciting landscape in South Africa – strongly driven by Education MEC’s messages about the pivotal role of SGB’s – as aftercare sits clearly within their locus of focus means that parents and school governors have a very tangible opportunity to effect positive change through a few very simple steps. Schools who have partnered with Sherpa Kids have critically analysed their current aftercare offerings and measured these against commitments made to communities they serve. Most have then requested Sherpa Kids to come on board. Our model provides a simple way for the school to rapidly improve outputs for teachers, parents and children simultaneously without the school needing to spend any money or use precious resources such as teacher or administrator time.

Q: What is your view are the main challenges in education today?
A: I think fundamentally challenges for education remain unchanged. Preparing children to strive and thrive within an unclear and uncertain future. The rapid rate of change is steepening this learning curve exponentially. Pressures on time and money build pressure too.

Q: What will be your message at African EduWeek?
A: Innovation often stems from simple solutions to obvious and on-going challenges. Simple focused approaches eradicates system blockages and energy “drains” I will be encouraging schools to work with industry professionals in order to relieve their burdens and more importantly improve output. Sherpa Kids area of focus is potentially impactful to 20-25% of the school cohort (and over 50% within foundation phase grades) without requiring the school to invest resources from within their already stretched space.

Q : What are you most looking forward to at the event?
Engagement and collaboration with passionate people across the spectrum of the sector who are committed to continuous improvement and innovation to drive results.

“Innovation often stems from simple solutions to obvious and on-going challenges” said Genevieve Allen - Managing Director - Sherpa Kids South Africa, speaker at upcoming African EduWeek on so-called “A Bomb” ….


Dates : Wed 12 and Thurs 13 July 2017 
Venue: Gallagher Estate Conference Centre Johannesburg South Africa.
SABC Education presents African EduWeek 2017
web: www.educationweek.co.za