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Glenoaks Remedial and Special Needs School

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Glenoaks Remedial and Special Needs School

Glenoaks School

Glenoaks is a private remedial and special needs school in Johannesburg that unleashes potential! We nurture academic, functional, social and emotional growth for learners and personalize support according to the needs and strengths of each learner. We create a nurturing and inclusive environment for our learners which is supported by our passionate and professional team. We achieve this through innovative adaptation, accommodation, differentiation and individualisation for each learner.

Remedial vs Special Needs

There is often confusion regarding the meaning of remedial and special needs and how schools adapt to the students’ different needs.

A remedial program is for learners who have average or higher intellectual abilities but who are not performing well in school. At Glenoaks, learners in the remedial stream sometimes have intellectual test scores below average, but they have the capability to cope in an academic program. Our admissions process considers overall ability and not simply a test score. Typically, remedial students are not struggling because of their intellectual abilities but instead with one subject area like reading, writing or mathematics. Learners may experience various barriers to learning, including dyslexia, dyspraxia, visual difficulties, ADHD, mild autism, dyscalculia, language delays etc. Remedial programs usually focus on narrowing or closing academic gaps, to the extent that the learner can be re-introduced to a mainstream school. Our remedial stream follows the Grade 1 – 7 CAPS curriculum with accommodations, differentiation and adaptations depending on learners’ needs. The majority of the learners in our remedial stream enter mainstream schools and successfully achieve good grade 12 results.

Special education differs from remedial education because the learners in these programs lack the intellectual ability to perform in a class that teaches standardised concepts and subjects. Students in these classes may lack social and emotional maturity, physical ability or the analytical skills needed to perform in a remedial or a mainstream classroom. In addition, they may experience global developmental delays. Special needs programs are often individualised with the aim of helping the learner to become a functional, employable adult. In our special needs streams we focus on functional subjects, life skills, and a variety of practical and project-driven vocational subjects.

At Glenoaks we have two special needs streams - the GOAL stream, and for older learners the Oak House Vocational Academy.

Glenoaks Assisted Learning (GOAL) Stream

The GOAL Stream caters for learners from the ages of 6 to 14 who have special educational needs. Often our learners’ chronological and developmental ages differ significantly, and it’s important that they learn according to their abilities and at their own pace. GOAL Stream learners benefit from repetition, positive reinforcement, and reduced time pressure.

We work on individualised numeracy and literacy programs. Other subjects include life skills, activities of daily living, cooking, supported reading, home management, basic administration, computers, library, sport, social and emotional skills, Occupational Therapy, Speech, Language and Communication and art. Older learners have opportunities for project-based learning in preparation for in-house work experience.

Oak House Vocational Academy

Oak House Vocational Academy caters for learners from the ages of 13 to 18 whose abilities and needs are not met in an academic setting. The Academy provides learners with a sense of purpose and self-worth, applicable academic input, emotional support and exposure to the expectations and realities of the world of work.

Our Academy program is designed to expose students to a variety of vocational settings aligned to each individual’s strengths, abilities and areas of interest. Students learn the skills required for entry level jobs, and focus on critical social skills, appropriate behaviours and attitudes required in the workplace. Prior to this, our students are taught a curriculum which includes academics, life skills, business skills, IT and admin skills, world knowledge, home management, hospitality, gardening, crafts and enterprise. Our approach culminates in a learner being more employable.

Learners in the work experience program gain exposure to a variety of industries including retail, IT, hairdressing, production line, garden nurseries, schools, sport, robotics and many more. In 2019 the first group of students graduated from Oak House Vocational Academy and successfully commenced with further training, part time or permanent employment.

Multi-disciplinary team and placement

The school’s journey began over fifty years ago, and many who visit remark on the friendly, nurturing atmosphere that permeates every aspect of Glenoaks School. The small class settings, individual and group therapies and the unwritten curriculum of care help us to grow our learners socially, emotionally and academically.

Glenoaks has a multi-disciplinary team consisting of psychologists, occupational, speech & language, remedial and learning support therapists, as well as facilitators, classroom assistants and job coaches.

Placement decisions are based on various formal and informal assessment processes and are made by a collaborative team. Similar processes follow when it comes to mainstreaming learners, transitioning to high school, proceeding to Oak House Vocational Academy or deciding on future prospects beyond primary schooling.

If you are looking for a school that believes in purpose, possibility and potential consider joining the Glenoaks family.

Contact us on 011 624 1160 OR email us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information or a walk around our school.

Glenoaks School

Glenoaks is a private remedial and special needs school in Johannesburg. Our ethos is rooted in unleashing a learner’s potential, growing possibilities, and giving them purpose in their lives.  Our personalized support is guided by the strengths and needs of each learner. “Within a tiny acorn a mighty oak is waiting” Peral Sanborn



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