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Wondering whether it’s wise to move to online schooling in SA?

Parents and students got a taste of online schooling during the Covid-19 lockdown, and many saw immediate benefits over ‘bricks and mortar’ schools. We’ll take a deep dive into why digital schooling is on the rise in South Africa.

When the pandemic hit our shores, it pushed schooling into the digital space,  and made it a more popular alternative to traditional schools. Teneo first opened its doors pre-pandemic in 2018, and was ahead of the curve back then. But the curve has caught up. Why? Because online schooling offers very real benefits for both parents and students.

A solve for schooling issues in SA

Parents often find themselves stuck between the proverbial  ‘rock and a hard place’ when it comes to finding a school for their child. 


Government schools struggle to accommodate the influx of new learners each year – and semigration to other provinces like the Western Cape hasn’t helped. As a result,  students are placed in ‘catchment area’ schools, often with less than ideal educational standards. To add to this, private schools are utterly unaffordable for the average South African family. 


It’s no wonder that online schools across South Africa have stepped into the gap by offering an excellent education at an affordable cost, with accreditation from both local and international examination boards like SACAI, IEB and Pearson Edexcel.


Teneo is currently one of the largest online schools in South Africa and is something of a pioneer in the space. Here’s why.

Pioneering education the Teneo way

Teneo offers parents persuasive and practical reasons to make the move to online tuition, through the following:

Calibre of teaching

All students are able to access high quality school lessons taught by qualified teachers registered with the South African Council for Educators (SACE). Many of our teachers are successful at the examiner level.

Range of subjects

Teneo offers the widest range of subjects in the country, provides schooling in two languages from Grade R to 12, and offers live teaching and recorded lesson formats led by accredited professional teachers.

Prepping students for the work world of the future

Tech is woven into every aspect of our work lives making digital literacy a key skill. Teneo preps students for this way of working by making them comfortable in an online environment and through their interaction with edtech tools like Canvas. They also learn online etiquette through Zoom meetings and webinars, and adopt vital ‘soft’ skills like time management.  

Addressing neurodivergent students

With attentional disorders on the rise, and Gen Z and Alpha increasingly distracted by their phones, Teneo provides an antidote to this – live lessons led by teachers, backed by recordings of these lessons, which students can play back as often and whenever they want, for revision on the day or ahead of tests and exams.

Flexibility and mobility

Teneo’s online environment offers families a way to learn at their own pace and place, with their unique needs prioritised. This frees up families who travel a lot or need to relocate, and enables talented kids to pursue activities outside school hours – such as national or international show-jumping, gymnastics or robotics competitions.

Value for money

Teneo’s enrolment data shows that 94% of parents feel online schooling provides better value for money than traditional schools. With the cost of living crisis crippling the average budget, schools like Teneo provide real value for money, skipping out-of-pocket costs for expensive uniforms, outings and meals at school.

So, what do our parents ultimately get out of the Teneo online experience?

Says a happy parent Matsipa: “It is an exceptional experience to be a part of Teneo. The teachers are patient, acknowledge every child’s individuality and provide good guidance whilst nurturing them to be the best possible versions of themselves. My son has learned to work independently and navigate the system. He has blossomed into a goal-orientated, confident, compassionate, competent young man.”


It looks like online schools offer an outstanding solution for families, across the country, looking for access to quality education.

How top online schools in South Africa like Teneo use tech to enhance the learning experience

The merging of live teaching and leading edtech* is making online schools more mainstream. For those who want to study online, South Africa is already ahead of the curve – and Teneo is setting a new benchmark for the benefit of teachers, students and parents.

Today, almost all schools use tech in one form or another. The only difference is that online or e-schools teach through technology while traditional schools teach with technology. It’s an important distinction.


For traditional schools, tech is simply a plug-in or add-on tool that doesn’t fundamentally alter the learning experience – think of using a tablet rather than, say, a paper notebook to write in. 


For Teneo, the tech is the teaching, with live teacher-led lessons recorded for playback and uploaded to a learning management platform where parents and students can access them at any time. 


On top of this, the tech puts the teacher, student and parent in the driving seat, through a data-rich dashboard that enables greater collaboration and control.

How Teneo connects teachers and students

Teneo’s live lessons and lesson recordings are a huge advantage. There’s a set daily timetable with live lessons taught online by a professional teacher, just like in a traditional school. In this space, students can interact, ask questions and get direct support from their teachers.


Every live lesson is recorded so students can revisit the lesson as many times as they want, or ‘attend’ the class if they’re absent. Nothing of the lesson is lost – not those spontaneous questions students ask or those impromptu segues where teachers go into richer detail.


Students find the recordings make it so much easier to take notes, revise work and go over subjects they struggle with, at a pace they prefer. Overall, this makes for a better online learning experience because: 


  • study is self-paced – students can go slow or speed up
  • no learning is lost – students don’t need to rely on a friend’s notes to catch up on missed classroom content
  • exam study is made easier – students can refresh their memory by revisiting the recordings at any time in the year


How teachers fit into tech-based online learning

Tech can never fully replace teachers – that human touch makes a huge difference, especially in the deeply emotional and constantly evolving space of learning. 


To this end, Teneo’s teachers share the exact same responsibilities as teachers at any other school – they facilitate each child’s unique academic journey and help them complete it successfully. 


They create and curate content, evaluate student work fairly and consistently, track academic progress, provide feedback, support and opportunities to meet, and upskill themselves through ongoing professional development.


On top of this, when it comes to exam papers, teachers bring critical contextual knowledge to the table. As subject specialists, their knowledge of the curriculum, subjects and students allows them to set exams at the right level, with relatable questions that take their students’ lived realities into account, and with a range of questions that reflect what the students have learnt.


But while teachers are irreplaceable, tech can take the online learning experience to a whole new level. Teneo makes sure teachers have the tech tools they need to keep up with their curriculums, catch up students who are struggling, and keep all kids engaged.


Every single student has a front row seat – there’s no one sitting at the back of the class missing out on the magic. 

How tech empowers students and enables parental involvement

Teneo gives students a full view of their own work, with a greater degree of control. They have multiple digital tools through which to connect with teachers and peers.


Teneo also offers parents a range of tech tools to help monitor their child’s progress. The Canvas Parent Observer app gives parents a 360° view of their child’s schedule, assignments, assessments and test scores, and attendance. 


Says Teneo Academic Lead, “Our strength lies in our ability to track participation and progress via the data we capture on students’ attendance and marks. Parents can monitor their child’s participation and encourage them to take proactive steps to improve.” 

How tech can help students evolve, connect and integrate

Teneo parents see dramatic changes in their kids: they’re more independent, better able to manage their time, and generally more fulfilled, as the flexibility of the tech platform allows them to pursue other passions, like endurance sports, TV acting, or even a small side business or hobby.


Teneo high school parent comments how their son has flourished personally and academically: “The teaching methods taught him time-management skills, self-discipline and the importance of research. In addition, he’s learnt to deal with challenges beyond his control, by being accountable if his internet connection fails due to loadshedding, and communicating such issues to his teachers and the support team on time.”


And when it comes to preparing students for tertiary study and the tech-enabled world of work, online high school seems to set students ahead of their peers – they’re more resourceful, ready for a challenge, and utterly at ease in a world of tech.

*Edtech or education technology is software and hardware used to enhance teacher-led and student-paced learning to optimise outcomes for students.

Chelsea Wedderburn’s Triumph at the Dance Star World Masters

Let’s journey into the realm of accomplishment as we applaud Chelsea Wedderburn, an extraordinary Grade 11 student, for leaving an indelible mark on the global stage!

We’re elated to share the news that Chelsea dazzled the international dance community with her exceptional performance at the Dance Star World Masters in Croatia, held from May 12th to 23rd, 2023.

Amidst the bustling arena of the B league, where dancers from 17 countries and a staggering 5000 participants converged in Croatia’s enchanting city of Porec, Chelsea’s performances evoked awe and admiration.

Her dedication and innate talent took center stage as she clinched a remarkable 5th place in the fiercely competitive Senior Lyrical Solo category, surpassing 35 talented competitors. Furthermore, Chelsea ascended to the pinnacle, securing 1st place in the Senior Acrobatic Solo category, triumphing over 13 formidable contestants.

Exploring New Horizons with Clubs and Adventures

The pursuit of knowledge need not be confined to the four walls of a classroom. Engaging in extracurricular activities, such as joining a club like Girl Guides, offers a wonderful opportunity to expand one’s horizons. It’s a chance to forge new friendships, acquire useful skills, and partake in thrilling escapades like camping and river rafting – experiences that go beyond textbooks and enrich life’s tapestry.

Lisa Bottcher, a Year 8 British International Teneo student, serves as an inspiration. She has firsthand knowledge of the profound enrichment that lies beyond the confines of traditional education. The virtual classroom may conclude for the day, but the opportunity for growth and exploration with the Girl Guides is just beginning for her.

Why not step out of your comfort zone after the lessons conclude? Embrace new challenges, cultivate friendships, and make memories that will last a lifetime. Your post-class hours can become a canvas for creativity and growth.

Share your post-class endeavours with us! We eagerly anticipate witnessing the remarkable journeys our students embark upon.

The Motsie Family’s Journey with Teneo’s Live school format

In the realm of modern education, the Motsie family has discovered a transformational shift through Teneo’s Live classroom format. The narrative of Xaedon and Xara, their twins, unfolds as a testament to the effectiveness of this innovative schooling approach.

With Teneo’s new offering, their educational journey has taken an exciting turn. Through a blend of real-time classes and cutting-edge technology, the twins have found a platform that nurtures their growth and development. The convergence of traditional learning and digital integration has propelled their academic progress.

In the words of Bianca Motsie, the impact of live classes is profound: “I truly appreciate the live classes. You get to interact with other students and teachers, LIVE. You also get lesson recordings in case you missed out on anything for any particular reason.” This seamless fusion of connectivity and flexibility ensures that no learning opportunity is missed, empowering students to take ownership of their education.

As Teneo stands as a supportive partner in their educational journey, the Motsie family’s twins flourish. The growth and success witnessed in Xaedon and Xara are a testament to live online classes.

For parents seeking a holistic and tailored approach to their child’s education, Teneo’s Live lessons emerge as an ideal solution. With its focus on interaction, personalisation, and real-time engagement, it paves the way for comprehensive growth. Consider this transformative educational experience for your child’s future success!

Sydney Lombard’s Success at the Christian Schools Championships

We are thrilled to extend our heartfelt congratulations to Sydney Lombard, a dedicated Grade 10 student at Teneo. In the vibrant setting of the Christian Schools Championships in Sasolburg in 2022, Sydney’s remarkable achievements came to the forefront.


Sydney’s participation in the competition was nothing short of impressive, as she showcased her athletic prowess in various events. Notably, she secured an admirable 3rd and 4th place in the following categories:


Girls U15 Hammer Throw

Girls U15 Javelin Throw

Girls U15 Discus Throw


Sydney’s dedication and hard work have truly paid off, earning her well-deserved recognition in these challenging events.


The Teneo family is incredibly proud of your achievements, Sydney. Your commitment to both academics and athletics is inspiring to us all.

At Teneo, we believe in nurturing excellence not only in the classroom but also on the fields and arenas of passion. You can achieve your biggest dreams while receiving a top-quality education.

Teneo Students’ Memorable Picnic in Cape Town

There’s something truly special about coming together, and at Teneo, that’s a sentiment we hold dear. The bonds of friendship formed within the Teneo community are something we cherish and encourage among all of our students, and this was beautifully showcased during a recent gathering in Cape Town. Our students know how to take picnicking to a whole new level, blending camaraderie and style effortlessly under the sun!

From laughter to shared stories, the power of these Teneo friendships was clear throughout the day. It was a day of fun, friendship, joy, and a reminder that beyond the virtual classrooms, a vibrant world of connection and shared experiences awaits.

Calling all Teneo students across the nation – it’s time to create your own unforgettable moments! Assemble your squad, find a picturesque spot, and let the memories unfold. Capture the joy, the laughter, and the genuine connections that make Teneo more than just an educational institution. Remember to tag us in your snapshots – we can’t wait to be a part of your journey and celebrate the essence of togetherness.