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Ampliora et Altiora

Larger and Higher

High School

about us


At Paarl Girls’ High, we stand for academic excellence! It is, however, equally important to us that each individual reaches her full potential, whatever that may be.

Aristotle rightfully said:  ''Happiness is the reward of virtue.''

We pay attention to the full potential of a child for when a child's heart is happy, they can excel in all areas.

School Times:
Gr. 8 – Gr. 12: 07:40 – 14:15

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Academic colours


We reward great academic achievement with honorary colours

Criteria according to each age group:

Grades 8 & 9 (receive colours in the first term of the following year)

Average of at least 85% in June and December examinations (a weight factor is awarded to different subjects, e.g.: mathematics and languages carry a heavier weight.)

Grades 10 to 12

Grades 10 & 11 receive honorary colours/colours in the first term of the following year

Gr. 10: Honorary colours: Average of at least 80% (June and December examinations)
Gr. 11: Honorary colours: Average of at least 80% (June and December examinations)
Gr. 11: Colours: Average of at least 75% (June and December examinations)

Grade 12s receive honorary colours/colours at the prize giving

Gr. 12: Average of at least 80% (June and September examinations)
Gr. 12: Colours: Average of at least 75% (June and September examinations)

Academic curriculum Grades 8 to 9

Compulsory Subjects

  • Afrikaans Home Language or Afrikaans First Additional Language
  • English Home Language or English First Additional Language
  • Life Orientation
  • Mathematics
  • Natural Sciences
  • Economic and Management Sciences
  • Technology
  • Social Sciences

Creative Arts Electives (choose 2)

  • Drama
  • Music
  • Art

Third Language Elective (choose 1)

  • Deutsch
  • Français

Note: All Grade 8 learners are introduced to German and French in Grade 8. Starting Grade 9, they may opt for one third language.

Computer Literacy and Coding

  • All Grade 8 and 9 learners do a computer literacy and coding course.

Optional Additional Subjects offered from Grades 9 to 12

  • Advanced Programme Mathematics (advised for learners who want to study Engineering or Actuarial Sciences).
Academic curriculum Grades 10 to 12

Compulsory Subjects

  • Afrikaans Home Language or Afrikaans First Additional Language
  • English Home Language or English First Additional Language
  • Life Orientation
  • Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy

Elective Subjects (choose one from each group)

Group 1

  • Physical Sciences
  • Accounting
  • Computer Applications Technology
  • Consumer Studies
  • French
  • Music

Group 2

  • Life Sciences
  • Economics
  • Consumer Studies
  • Computer Applications Technology
  • Music
  • Engineering Graphics and Design
  • German

Group 3

  • Accounting
  • Physical Sciences
  • Life Sciences
  • Economics
  • History
  • Geography
  • Music

Subjects taught outside the school timetable may be elected as an 8th subject or it can replace one of the electives above

  • Visual Art (Jack Meyer Art Centre)
  • Design Art (Jack Meyer Art Centre)
  • Dramatic Arts (Wiwe Pretorius)
  • Music (Paarl GHS)

The following subjects can also be chosen, but at an additional fee

  • Information Technology (IT) (Labori HS)
  • German
  • Engineering Graphics and Design (C. Badenhorst)
  • History (K. Swart)

Ekstra Curricular Academics

  • Robotics
  • Advanced Maths

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Other focus areas


“The essence of leadership is influence, not authority” – unknown

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” – Johan Quincy Adams

Continuous leadership

To make a positive difference relating to a specific aspect of the school, within and outside of the school grounds, during the learner's term as a leader. The leadership structure is focused on service delivery, as opposed to project management.

Influential leadership focussed on service delivery 

To focus on the learner's strengths during their leadership term to make a positive contribution to the school's environment and people.

Leadership after school

To empower learner leaders and to educate them in such a way that they will be prepared for 21st-century leadership, which expects a person to react in an inclusive way, with the focus on cooperation and service delivery, when faced with unique challenges and opportunities.

World leaders

The leader must raise awareness about certain daily matters that learners have to face so that they can make a significant contribution relating to these matters in the future.


By making use of experienced and passionate educators to act as mentors for the learner leaders, for the purpose of development, but also so that leaders can sow back after school as mentors for others.

Important skills we want to identify and develop in the leaders of Paarl Girls' High

Creativity &
critical thinking
Relationships & collaboration
Development & growth mindset
Inclusivity & anti-discrimination
Influence over control
Action, not only words
To lead
with others

Learner Leaders

View leaders


The value of sport at Paarl Girls' High lie in the participation and personal development of each sportswoman. Our history of sporting excellence is a tribute to our dedicated teachers and professional coaches who are passionate about our players.


Our tennis has gone from strength to strength in recent years. Paar Girls' High is privileged to have 6 tennis courts. Professional tennis coaching by Edge Tennis Academy is offered to our top tennis players throughout the year.

We participate in the following events: Agnes Pauw, Gerrie Berner, Interschools, All Girls’ Festival, Amanda Coetzer, Absolut Menlo, Marilie Moolman and CR van der Merwe Curro tennis tournaments.


Our squash team plays in the Boland A-League every year and also attends the yearly All Girls' Festival.


Our learners receive weekly coaching and participate in the Cape Winelands League. 

Cross Country

Our cross country athletes partake in the local cross country series which takes place at one of the surrounding schools in Paarl, Stellenbosch and Wellington.

Cross country serves as the winter programme for our middle distance athletes and we encourage as many as possible to partake in the local cross country series. The athletes must run a distance of 4kms. At the end of the series, a local school is awarded as the winner of the series.


Professional swimmers affiliate with the swimming clubs in Paarl. Paarl Girls' High is privileged to have a swimming pool on the school premises. All other swimmers practice at the school. We also partake in the yearly 4M, Interschools and various local swim galas. 


We are proud to have 15 high school teams that compete against strong Boland and Western Cape hockey teams from March to August. With the use of our astroturf and excellent coaches, we have grown in numbers and strength in recent years.

Our focus is on developing the individual to be part of a fun, challenging and learning hockey environment.

We participate in the following hockey days, clinics and tournaments:

St Mary’s Investec Hockey Festival, DF Malan Coaching Clinic, All Girls’ Festival, The Cape Town International Hockey Festival, Bloemhof u.16 Tournament, Rustenburg u.16 Tournament, Paarl Vallei Coaching Clinic, Kwagga Junior Hockey Tournament and Interschools.


With more than 400 players, netball is one of our biggest offerings in the sports arena.

The netball season commences every year with a tour to the Waterkloof Netball Festival which takes place during the March school holidays for all our age groups. 

We partake in the Boland League as well as the Top Schools Competition, to which 2 to 5 teams make it to the final round in Boksburg. Our u.16 and u.18 teams are also invited to the well-known Wildeklawer Rugby en Netbalfees.

First Aid

Learners may become part of our first aid team by obtaining their Level III First Aid Certificate (for their own account). Experts in the field of sports injuries, present courses to augment the repertoire of our team members throughout the year. 

The first aid team delivers an important service by being on duty during all home-based matches that take place throughout the season.

Extracurricular sport

We give recognition to learners that excel in sport types that take place outside of the school's offering. Every year, learners participate in the following sports:

  • Rhythmic Gymnastics
  • Artistic Gymnastics
  • Pentathlon
  • Equestrian
  • Underwater Hockey
  • Water Polo, etc.


The lively Arts Department comprises of theatre, music, visual arts, dance, debating, public speaking, culinary arts, photography and a school newspaper. We have a long-term commitment to the arts and numerous opportunities are on offer where each individual’s self-confidence on stage and in life can be developed.


Our drama students are afforded the opportunity to showcase their acting skills at various art contests, including the Paarlvallei Eisteddfod, Stellenbosch Kunswedstryd and the Tygerberg International Eisteddfod every year. The school also participates in at least two theatre festivals yearly, including the ATKV Tienertoneel. These opportunities give learners exposure to the wonderful world of theatre and foster a love for the arts. 

Every second year, the high school puts on a spectacular musical. Not only do the school’s actors, singers and dancers grace the stage, but learners who have a passion for creating props, costumes, stage décor, as well as sound and lighting are given the opportunity to hone their craft. The past two musicals, Cinderella and Alice, have enjoyed rave reviews and we look forward to all the musicals to come!



We believe a school that sings together, stands together.

Our High School Choir was the proud recipient of the Laureate Award in the Prague World Choir Festival 2017. We have performed in cathedrals and on concert stages across Europe and South Africa. In 2013 and 2015 our choir was crowned as category winners for one of South Africa’s most prestigious choir competitions, the ATKV Applous Eisteddfod.


The High School Band mainly boasts strings, woodwinds, percussion and piano. Learners who play guitar and ukelele also join us from time to time. The band plays a combination of classical music, light music and jazz. They also guide us during our hall openings and perform at important school functions, as well as partake in festivals and Eistedfodds. 

Music lessons 

Paarl Girls' High offers music lessons for the following instruments:

  • Violin
  • Piano
  • Singing
  • Flute
  • Cello
  • Recorder
  • Guitar
  • Base guitar
  • Ukelele
  • Drums

Visual arts

Art can be taken as an external subject between Grades 10 to 12. The Jack Meyer Art Centre offers courses in Printmaking and Drawing, Textile Design, Graphic Design, Jewellery Design and Mixed Media.Two of our learners, Hannah Wilkinson and Mieke Wiehman achieved 100% in the NSC exams in 2019. This excellent achievement pays homage to the high standards of the Jack Meyer Art Centre.


Our photographers are professionally trained and many of their works are used in school publications. In 2019 we won the Best Photographers in the Grade 8 and 9 categories at the Tygerberg International Eisteddfod.

School publications

Learners sharpen their writing, editing and layout designs when they join the Nautilus School Newspaper.
The newspaper is printed once a term and we are working towards online publishing.

Public speaking and debate


Debating occurs in various forms and can be traced back to the philosophical and political debates of Ancient Greece. Moden forms of debating is popular because it teaches learners or speakers to think critically in an exciting way. This in turn develops communication skills, self-confidence, quick thinking, listening skills, the ability to set and refute arguments, and knowledge about current affairs.  

Public speaking

We create a platform where learners obtain public speaking and critical thinking skills and gain newfound confidence in their speaking abilities. We participate in the Boland League every Wednesday at Stellenbosch University and our team is currently ranked under the top 10 teams in the Western Province. Our learners also take part in national competitions each year including the Oppi-Tong-Af Festival and the All Girls’ Festival.

Culinary arts

In the Consumer Studies practical classes, we teach the basic techniques and ingredients of cooking while having fun exploring each individual learner’s creative nature.

During the 3-year course, learners are shaped into confident cooks to explore the wonderful world of the culinary arts. We are very proud to have been crowned the overall winners of the All Girls’ Festival Master Chef cooking competition for three consecutive years!


At Paarl Girls’ High, we strive to create a happy and challenging environment where each individual can reach her full potential.

Learner wellness is one of the key elements to reaching this goal. We deliberately create space in the curriculum and in the timetable to focus on the improvement of the learner’s wellness by teaching the learners important skills. We believe that practising healthy habits daily attains better physical and mental health. Learners will instead of just surviving, start thriving.

Wellbeing: a state where children can meet their learning potential, cope with normal stresses and are connected to others.

A culture of wellbeing is prioritised across the entire school community. Positive social norms and behaviour are built between our staff and our students. A sense of belonging and inclusivity is woven through everything the school does. It is a whole-school approach.

This help students to:

  • Flourish in their education journey
  • Develop empathy for others and understand relationships
  • Build resilience - the ability to cope and thrive in the face of challenges
  • Use positive approaches to manage their behaviour, fostering a range of strategies
  • Grow their social and emotional skills and the confidence to be themselves

Measuring a child’s wellbeing is important because all children deserve to be happy.

The 5 wellness pillars we embrace to help the learners to find balance, build resilience and boost mental health

Be active
Wellness Glasses
Take notice
Keep learning
To give

Wellness Info

Choice theory

At our High School we focus on the following:

The Choice Theory was developed by Dr. William Glasser. It explains human behaviour based on internal motivation.  It suggests that all our behaviour is chosen as we continually attempt to meet one or more of the five basic needs that are part of our genetic structure.

Together we teach the learners in grade periods as well as in the Life Orientation curriculum, that you may not have control over what you feel and your physiology, but you can control how you think and how you act.

Transform to Perform (T2P)

Transform to Perform (T2P): This strategy is an integrated approach by the WCED, developing a values-driven mindset of self belief and values within all role players (learners, teachers, parents and officials, including leadership and top management) in the province.

The WCED believes that the shift in self-belief, values and mindsets, should result in improved behaviour and performance by all stakeholders – not to mention improved results!

At Paarl Girls’ High we focus on:

  • Enhancing the mantra of the WCED: Enter to learn, leave to serve
  • Growth Mindset: Lessons are created by staff members to teach the principles of growth mindset to the learners.

Learner's wellness program

We encouraged learners to access a number of coping mechanisms that will assist in maintaining their mental health and well-being focussing on the following:


We focus on GRIT – a personality trait possessed by individuals who demonstrate passion and perseverance toward a goal despite being confronted by significant obstacles and distractions. Learners have to realise that IQ is not the only factor separating successful people from those who struggled, but that grit is a highly predictive of success.

“I survived because the fire inside me burned brighter than the fire around me”

“Grit is that “extra something” that separates the most successful people from the rest”


In this session we introduce Dr Carol Dweck’s theory that states when students believe they can get smarter or improve in specific skills, they understand that effort makes them stronger. There are two main mindsets we can use to navigate life: growth and fixed mindset. Having a growth mindset is essential for success. If you believe that your qualities are unchangeable (fixed mindset), you will want to prove yourself, rather than learning from your mistakes.

The power of YET: “There is a difference between not knowing and not knowing YET”

“Results and achievements tell you where a person is, but they don’t tell you where a person could end up”


In a confusing time, it is important to have the ability to recognise and make sense of our emotions so that we will be able to manage it to prevent stress and anxiety.

Learners are taught that they have to learn to “ride the wave” that represents the ebbs and flows associated with life. Negative emotions must not be replaced, but rather be recognised and dealt with.

“You must be the master of your emotions if you wish to live in peace, for he who can control himself, becomes free”


This session guides the learners to find the things that motivate them and also to identify those factors that steal their motivation. Tools are given to the learners on how to react when you feel discouraged.

“You will never always be motivated. You have to learn to be disciplined.”


According to the feedback from the learners from each specific grade, the teachers and the parents, we decided on specific grade focusses for 2021:

Grade 8:
Identity: Truth, not trend
Grade 9: Abundance: Embrace the moment
Grade 10: Adventure: Find your fire
Grade 11: Shine: Become a beacon of light
Grade 12: Passion: Persevere with passion

Social responsibility

Reach Out is a charity group unique to Paarl Girls' High School.

The establishment of this action in 2007, by one of our learners, is still making a difference in the lives of our fellow human beings today.

Activities and outreach actions include the following:

  • Visits to local nursing homes and orphanages to provide emotional and social care.
  • Making and handing out sandwiches to needy primary schools in the local community.
  • Collecting shoes, toiletries and stationary items for needy people in our Paarl community.
  • Donations and visits to daycare centers in the local community.
  • Fundraisers to make financial contributions to national projects, such as Tekkie-Tax, Casual Day, Day-Without-Shoes, Jan Kriel School, Little Fighters and the Cancer Foundation.

Wellness project

In 2015 Ihlumelo Senior Secondary School contacted Paarl Girls’ High for support with their Accounting learners of whom only 47% passed the subject. We started workshops where the learners of Paarl Girls’ High, with the support of the Accounting teachers, worked through exam papers with the learners of Ihlumelo. During that year the pass rate of the Ihlumelo accounting learners rocketed to 92%.

The partnership between the two schools has been continuing ever since. The corporate sector of Paarl has also become involved. Mpact provides all the necessary printing paper and files and SPAR provides snacks for the learners.

our staff

High school team

Inge Clift


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Lelani van der Merwe

Maths and EMS

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Lilian Fouché

LO and EMS

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Elizabeth Venter

Senior Phase Intern

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Lourinda Theart

FET Phase Intern

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René Badenhorst


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Mia van Heerden


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Elina Alting-Mees


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Casper Badenhorst

Engineering Graphics and Design & Mathematical Literacy

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Elmari Basson

Economic and Management Sciences

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Maré Bosch

Mathematics and HOD of Sport

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Lizhan Vermaak

Economics and Management Sciences Life Orientation

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Gretha Burnett

Afrikaans & French

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Heloïse Coetzee

Life Sciences & Natural Sciences

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Bianca de Villiers


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Marlene Dreyer

Computer Application Technology

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Francelle du Plessis

English & Creative Arts

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Talita Ebersohn


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Thalita Ferreira


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Su-Mari Fourie

Economic Management Sciences, Economics & Accounting

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Christelle Gava

German & Music

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Cara Hamer

Computer Applications Technology, Life Orientation & Coding

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René Hamer

Physical Sciences & Natural Sciences

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Talita Aucamp


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Anri Keevy


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Liana Kemp


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Mada Klein

Consumer Studies

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Heidi Kroukamp

English & Drama

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Hannalie Muller


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Michéle Phelan

English and French

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Danelle van Heerden

Computer Applications Technology & Mathematical Literacy

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Jackie Scheepers

Economics & Life Orientation

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Carine Schultheiss

Life Sciences & Natural Sciences

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Inge Scott

Flute & Orchestra

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Cara Smit


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Liesl Stevens

Geography & Social Sciences

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Louise van Rensburg

Mathematics and Mathematical Literacy

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Karen Swart

History & Social Sciences

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Marionique Wentzel

Physical Sciences

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Raimondo van Staden-Slabbert

Head of Arts

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Marli Visagie

Life Orientation & Life Sciences

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Jani van der Merwe

Physical Sciences & Natural Sciences Grades 8-11

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L’nanda le Roux

Life Sciences and Natural Science Grades 8-9

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Corlize Viljoen

Accounting Grades 10-12

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