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Gaynor Cozens

Early Literacy Specialist

I have been a Foundation Phase teacher since 1981 and have been involved in education ever since. I studied at Wesley Teacher Training College, Roggebaai College and UCT. Serving in education in various capacities such as teacher, facilitator, manager, head of department and author has been an absolute joy and privilege. I have authored several books in mathematics and life skills. In January 2018, after retiring, I joined the Wordworks team. I implemented the Home-School Partnerships Programme for a period of four years before that. I believe in the value of this programme and the need for it in the country.

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Lavinia Davis

Early Literacy Specialist

Lavinia retired in 2016 after 38 years in Education. She qualified with a Diploma in Primary School Teaching (PTD) at Hewat Training College and completed a Diploma in School Librarianship (DSL) at UWC. Lavinia taught mainly in the Intermediate Phase and a short stint in the Foundation Phase – Grade 3. She progressed through the different management ranks to principal and retired in this post after 15 years. Lavinia did short management courses and mentored Principals/Educators in our circuit in conjunction with the Circuit Manager. As the Principal of the school, Lavinia’s passion has always been about literacy. She trained as a Wordworks Facilitator when it was offered to the schools and introduced the Home-School Partnerships (HSP) Programme to the school. Lavinia started working, part time, at Wordworks in January 2018 as a Mentor in the HSP Programme.

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Brigid Comrie

Senior Literacy Specialist

Brigid has a Bachelor of Education from the University of Cape Town, a Diploma in Specialised Education from the University of South Africa, a Speech and Hearing Specialist Diploma from UCT, and a Parenting and Leadership Certificate from the Parent Centre. She worked for the Western Cape Education Department where she was responsible for managing Learning Support in the mainstream, and subsequently as a freelance education specialist. She is the author of several textbooks published by Juta’s. She is a founding member of Wordworks, and designed and developed the Home-School Partnerships Programme.

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Bukelwa Yuze

Early Literacy Specialist and Trainer

Bukelwa, who has a Bachelor of Education (BEd) degree, comes to Wordworks from the Nelson Mandela Institute for Education and Rural Development where she specialised in support for Grades 2 and 3 between 2011 – 2015. Prior to that she had 19 years of teaching in the foundation phase in Cape Town. As a teacher trainer, Bukelwa has a special interest in isiXhosa and English literacy, and the promotion of early reading. She is an advocate for the holistic development of the child with an emphasis on child-friendly classroom management, and with a strong interest in inclusive education.

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Cathy Lincoln

Senior Literacy Specialist 

Cathy has a BA, a post-graduate diploma in Early Childhood Development and another in secondary school teaching. She joined Wordworks in 2011 after 30 years in the classroom. For 21 of those years she taught pre-primary classes, including children with special needs. She has also taught English as a second language to High School Afrikaans and isiXhosa speakers.

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Sue Setton

Ready Steady Read Write Programme Manager

Sue has a Diploma in Junior Primary Education from Rhodes University and has experience teaching children in the foundation phase at regular schools and at schools for deaf children. She has completed a TEFL course and has experience teaching children and adults English as a second language. After she qualified with a Diploma in Special Education from UNISA, she worked at Herzlia Primary as the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) and later headed up the Learning Support Team.

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Lynn Stefano

Every Word Counts Programme Manager

Lynn has a Masters in Agriculture (Food Security) and Post Grad Diploma in Agriculture (Rural resource management). She has since 1997 worked with deeply rural communities in KwaZulu-Natal to improve their access to information and promote adult and early literacy. As director of the Family Literacy Project for six years, she gained experience in home visiting programmes, community libraries, maternal and child health and community-driven development. Lynn joined Wordworks in February 2014.

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Colleen Diedericks

Home-School Partnerships Programme Manager

Colleen was a Foundation Phase subject advisor for 7 years in the Metro South Education District. She has 26 years of teaching experience in both intermediate and foundation phase prior to becoming a subject advisor. She served as the Head of Department in Foundation Phase for 8 years and holds a B.Ed Degree, a Diploma in Specialised Education as well as a Primary Teachers’ Diploma. After serving the WCED for 32 years, Colleen worked as a READ Educational Trust trainer and teacher mentor and then at UCT in the SDU unit after which she joined the Wordworks Team.

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Asanda Mphala

Early Literacy Specialist

Asanda studied E.C.D. level 5 at the College of Cape Town in 2009. After completion, she worked as a Grade R practitioner at Nosapho Educare where she discovered her passion for early learning. She then furthered her studies at the University of South Africa where she is completing her B.Ed in Foundation Phase. In 2011 she was appointed as a Grade R practitioner at Intshayelelo Primary School. During that time she was a lead teacher for Ikhwezi project from UCT and the Metro East District of Education. She also volunteered as a CAPS document facilitator for Grade R practitioners and H.O.D’s in isiXhosa. In addition she was a lead teacher for the Wordworks Stellar programme. She has joined Wordworks in 2017, specially focusing on the Home-School Partnerships Programme.

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Phuthunywa Gxavu

Early Literacy Specialist

Phuthunywa was an educator at Ntwasahlobo Primary School and moved to Kwafaku Primary School where she became the Head of Department and later on became the Deputy Principal. She has a pre – teachers’ diploma and also did short courses that gave her skills to work with adults. She did a short course in international literacy leaders’ certification programme where later on she worked at Sivuyile Adult Centre. Phuthunywa was also a volunteer at Vulindlela Reading Club to assist children with their reading and to inculcate love of books. She joined Wordworks in 2017 as an early literacy specialist in the Home-School Partnerships Programme.