St Martin de Porres High School, Orlando West

School Information: St Martin de Porres High School

 

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Orlando West has its origins in the "Orlando Shanty Town" that grew up during the Second World War when the black population of Johannesburg grew in leaps and bounds. The parish and school were established in 1946 by the Oblates of Mary. The original school building, one of the oldest in Orlando West, served as a school during the week and a church on Sunday. Shortly after the school was built a school hall and church followed.

By the mid-1950s, the school went up to standard six. One thousand children were taught in two shifts - the first ending at 1pm, and the second around 5.30pm. These children were fed too. In the 1960s the Sisters cooked each day in an enormous cauldron over an open fire. From 1947 the school had catered for primary school children, but in 2003 it was decided that Soweto needed another Catholic high school, and St. Martin's was the chosen site. In 2006 St. Martin de Porres High School saw its first Matric Class which achieved a 100% pass rate in the final exams. The school continues to perform well, consistently recognised by the school district for its excellence in education. Today the school is a high school with 670 students. Amongst its alumni St. Martin's boasts Bishop Mvemve and Tokyo Sexwale.

 

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