IBhodi Trust Case Study

The Background

In 2020, Valenture Institute a global online high school partnered with the iBhodi Trust to develop a model of providing excellent education to students who come from an impoverished background. They identified 28 mixedability students in Grade 9 from Beaconhill, Mitchell’s Plein in Cape Town to receive Valenture’s online education while remaining within the school they originally came from. However, they experienced the problem of backlogs in both numeracy and literacy. As such, they partnered with Reflective Learning to assist their need for numeracy catchup

The Baseline Results

Initial baseline results showed that students suffered from extensive backlogs. While students were generally three grades behind in Numbers, they were five years behind for Measurement and six years behind for Fractions. This showed in their Cambridge curriculum gradelevel assessments as they achieved an average of 30% with only a quarter passing the test

The baseline results of Valenture Institute partnered with Ibhodi Trust before Reflective Learning

The Intervention

The team decided to dedicate one term (13 weeks) purely to remediation of these gapsStudents worked on the Reflective Learning app for 30-minutes per day on average and were given class-recognition when they reached key milestones in their learning. The class teacher provided support, answering questions where required

The Improvements

After only 13 weeks, students saw a dramatic improvement in both their conceptual Catch Up and their gradelevel marks. The vast majority of students caught up to the required grade level in Numbers and Data Literacy, more than half in Fractions, and just less than half in Measurement. On average, the class caught up four years of knowledge across the seven threads of Maths

This improvement in conceptual knowledge translated to their gradelevel assessments. Their third term test showed an increase in the class average to 53% with threequarters now passing. And after two weeks of further gradelevel input, their class average improved to 74%, with only a single student not passing. One student jumped from 14% to 84%

Numbers concpet results at Valenture Institute with Reflective Learning




The bars are individual students  and their estimated gradelevel of proficiency (even though they were in Grade 9). The darker colour shows their baseline results and the lighter colour shows their improvement over the 13 weeks.

The Learnings 

This case study shows that students from previously disadvantaged communities have the ability to catchup tremendous amounts when provided with the right content at the right level, sufficient time with content, consistent positive support, and motivating rewards. While these students have yet to complete their catchup process, they currently stand with a better class average and less inequality in foundational mathematical understanding than the majority of upperend schools.

* This is based on our experience of running more than 100 000 assessments across schools of all backgrounds.


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