Cape Recife High School is a public school for Learners with Special Education Needs which implies that the learners require specialized teaching programs and facilities as well as relevant therapy to meet the same curricular and examination standards as their peers in regular schools.

Cape Recife was established on I March 1956 in the Congregational Church hall in Pearson Street. On 20 April 1963 the school moved to the present buildings in Admiralty Way, Summerstrand. From humble beginnings it has grown to become a very large co-educational school for Learners with Special Education Needs. It is well known for its high educational standards and excellent matric results. The school is regarded as one of the leading schools of its kind in the country.


The school strives to promote the integration of learners as much as possible with learners from mainstream schools. This is achieved via a flexible system whereby learners can be placed at the school and placed back in mainstream schools when they are ready. In addition to this, integration with mainstream schools is also achieved by means of participation in sporting and cultural programmes.

Cape Recife High School aims to seek and implement ways of mutual co-operation and support to benefit all those concerned with education in the Summerstrand area. This implies that there are special links with the educational institutions [schools and the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University] located in the Summerstrand area.

In terms of the most recent educational policy for Inclusive Education, Cape Recife High School will also serve as a resource center, in the broader community, for Learners with Special Education Needs.


The curriculum of the school consists of services and programmes which are bonded by an ethos of warmth, love, firm but reasonable discipline and a great emphasis on producing well mannered, balanced individuals. The school accommodates learners from Pre-Primary to Grade 12 and these learners follow the same curriculum prescribed for mainstream schools.

All Learning Areas from Grade R to Grade 9 are the same as for mainstream schools. In Grades 10 to 12, the following subjects are compulsory:

Home Languages and First Additional Languages, Life Orientation and Core Mathematics / Mathematical Literacy. In addition to this, there is a choice of subjects which includes the following: Business Studies, Life Sciences, Computer Application Technology, Hospitality Studies and Geography. This choice will enable learners to have access to a wide spectrum of studies at higher educational institutions as well as to prepare them for entry into the labour market.

In order to enable the teachers to differentiate and pay individual attention to each learner, the classes are small. English and Afrikaans are the media of instruction. The academic standards maintained are exactly the same as at mainstream schools and the matriculants write the same external examinations as the learners at mainstream schools.


The school accommodates learners with barriers to learning which result in special educational needs. These special education needs arise mainly from the following:


These learners require specialized education and therapy to comply with their special educational needs.


These learners have at least an average intelligence but underachieve at school because of impaired learning processes which lead to problems with reading, spelling, writing, mathematics, memorizing of subject content and general poor subject achievement.

They have the ability to master the mainstream curricular standards if offered specialized teaching and therapy and are taught in small classes where they receive individualized attention. They are not mentally handicapped in any way and often have intellectual abilities and talents far above the average.


Learners with other high support needs who can benefit from the school’s programs and can master the curriculum, are also accommodated after consultation with the Eastern Cape Department of Education.


In addition to the small group classroom teaching by experienced teachers, there is a school-based multidisciplinary support team consisting of remedial teachers, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech-language therapists, a nursing sister as well as psychological services.

These staff members work very closely in a team with the teachers to ensure that the learners’ special education needs are correctly assessed and that the relevant services are delivered. This leads to an integrated holistic approach to the needs of the learner and keeps the teaching and specialized intervention sharply focused in order to ensure optimal progress.


At present learners are admitted to the school by the Eastern Cape Department of Education. Therefore, applications for admission must be channeled to the Eastern Cape Department of Education, the body responsible for the placement of learners.

Parents, school principals, psychologists or any other persons who require further information on the referral and admission procedures, as well as persons who wish to visit the school, are requested to contact the principal.