Subscribe to our Newsletter

click to dowload our latest edition



‘I know my dad was rooting for me’

Avatar photo



Michaela Saayman went into her matric year at King David High School Linksfield with an overwhelming sense of stress and anxiety. “I had no idea what lay ahead for me,” she said. Adding to this challenge, she also had to cope without her dad, Steyn, who tragically passed away in October 2021.

“The thing I found most difficult about matric was not having my dad with me to share all these milestones and achievements,” she says. “I know my dad was rooting for me and watching over me all the time.”

Saayman’s goal for matric was to achieve good results in prelims and finals regardless of what she needed to do to achieve it. “The year was extremely demanding, with many hours being spent doing assignments, homework, past exam papers, and studying,” she says.

“As the valedictory awards came around, I was certain I wasn’t going to receive any awards,” Saayman says. To her delight, she ended up receiving the Milner Trophy for the consumer studies practical, an award for sustained commitment and improvement in tourism, and the Renee Freedman Trophy for genuine interest in biological science. “I was absolutely thrilled, as was my family,” she says.

“The last hurdle was finals,” Saayman says. “Weeks, days, hours, and minutes were spent studying and ensuring I had all the information I needed to achieve my goals.”

Having found prelims more difficult than she anticipated, Saayman was caught by surprise when she found that finals were easier than prelims. “I walked out the exams feeling confident and relieved that finally the year of hard work and dedication had come to an end.”

Saayman is thankful for all the support she received from her family, the school, the community, and friends. “The person who really got me through the hard time and is still helping me through it is my boyfriend,” she says.

Saayman describes her late dad as “a kind-hearted, friendly man who always put others before himself”. She describes him as someone who “was always willing to help others in need and was a great believer in charity work”. He was a bodyguard by profession, and had first-aid training. “He would put those skills to use in order to benefit others, and did it without expecting any acknowledgement or reward. My dad would go to the ends of the earth to ensure my brother and I had everything we needed and wanted,” she says.

Saayman plans to take a gap year and complete a few courses before starting her studies in remedial teaching next year. “I thank King David Linksfield for paving my path to my future,” she says.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *