Inmarsat supports schools project in South Africa

16 November 2016: Participants in a drive to significantly improve schooling in South Africa have spoken of the value of Inmarsat’s support.

South Africa classroom

Partners for Possibility (PfP) is a project run by national non-profit and public benefit organisation Symphonia for South Africa with the aim of enabling every child in the country to receive a good education by 2025. South Africa was ranked 138th out of 140 countries in the World Economic Forum Global Competitive Report 2015/16 for the overall quality of its education system, and came last for maths and science teaching.

PfP partners school principals one-to-one with business leaders for 12 months, so they can work together on leadership skills to better engage with teachers, students, parents and the local community.


Inmarsat is sponsoring the programme in four under-resourced government schools in the Cape Town area. Inmarsat Chief Corporate Affairs Officer & Company Secretary Alison Horrocks recently met with the participating business people, who expressed gratitude for Inmarsat’s support in allowing them to contribute their time and help make a difference.

Alison also visited Vissershok primary school (pictured), where Gordon McMillan, Inmarsat Global Government Business Development Director for Africa and the Middle East, has been partnered with principal Greg Andries.

Greg described some of the challenges he faces, ranging from too much time spent on paperwork to trying to encourage parental involvement when the vast majority of the 570 pupils are bused in from an isolated informal settlement four miles away, making it difficult for parents to attend meetings.

He praised the PfP programme and the benefits of having a thinking partner outside the education system, which has resulted in a more structured and focused school development plan, increased self-confidence for Greg himself, and improved motivation of teachers.