Improving Access To Quality Schooling In Low-Income Areas

In the suburb of Jeppestown just east of the Johannesburg CBD, on the site of an obsolete shoe factory, a school now operates that is filled with bright, happy children who previously had little opportunity for learning.

Streetlight Schools opened in October 2013 as a pilot after-school programme in a small store-room in Bjala Square, where children with limited or no early childhood education could come to learn in an after-school pilot programme. In 2015, an education laboratory was launched – a prototype of their uniquely innovative school model, and in January 2016, Streetlight Schools Jeppe Park Primary School campus came into being. The school has 70 students, divided between Grade R and Grade 1, and will grow a grade each year until Grade 7 is reached.

In view of the success of the school and the needs of the community, JG Afrika was approached, via its specialist traffic and transportation subsidiary, TTT Africa, to undertake a traffic impact study for the proposed expansion of the school.

Streetlight Schools Jeppe Park Primary School is part of an education ecosystem being established in the area by Bjala, an urban solutions social enterprise located in Jeppestown. One of Bjala’s aims is to create an urban education ecosystem providing low-income families in the area with access to high-quality, low-cost education from early childhood to tertiary studies. Bjala achieves this by subsidising school campus space and carefully selecting the best education partners, who are leading innovators in education service provision. This enables them to break through the ceiling of what it means to provide high-quality education affordably.

Jeppe Park Primary is already on site in Bjala Square, a seven-storey, mixed-use building, but numbers are to be increased to 300 learners. The proposed high school partner, African School of Excellence, will provide for 240 students, and a Bjala Neighbourhood Early Childhood Development Centre will cater for a further 100 children.

The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) indicated that for these plans to continue, a traffic impact study and a plan for parking and drop-off parking would have to be provided. TTT Africa was happy to undertake the study pro bono and arranged traffic counts, calculated the trip generation, determined parking demand and designed the off-street parking area. A traffic statement for the schools was submitted to the JRA.