Welcome to Penryn

Where we make a difference and enable one and all to soar on eagles' wings



Executive Head's Welcome

Welcome to Penryn College’s website – I hope that you enjoy learning more about our unique school.

Penryn College was founded in 1991 through a partnership between private enterprise, key members of the Mpumalanga community – including the late Dr Enos Mabuza – and St Stithians College in Gauteng.

The original vision was to establish a community centre that would act as a ‘beacon school’; a centre of excellence from which an educational community initiative (now called Penreach) would reach out into the surrounding disadvantaged school system.

This vision still holds true today.

This initiative, begun in 1994, was to be a powerful force in the reconstruction and development of education in the Mpumalanga Lowveld, by striving in real and practical ways to meet the educational needs of partner communities, and has achieved this.

Today, Penryn College is a top independent, co-educational school situated between Nelspruit and White River that provides quality holistic education from Pre-school through to Grade 12.  A Christian ethos pervades all that takes place at the primary and high school and as such its links to the Methodist Church of South Africa are all the more valued.

Scholars and staff are still involved in the outreach activities of Penreach, now a fully-fledged NGO that annually reaches between 300 000 and 500 000 learners across Mpumalanga.

Penryn’s unique and spectacular setting overlooking the Crocodile River valley provides an idyllic space for its scholars to grow and learn. The school’s innovative approach to nurturing the intellectual, physical, spiritual and emotional well-being of our scholars sets it apart as a leader in education in the area and beyond.

From the youngest 3-year-old to those about to move on to tertiary education, our scholars are challenged to step beyond their comfort zones in order to develop into strong, independent-minded, responsible, global citizens. We focus on all aspects that make up a vibrant school life including academics, sport, drama, art and leadership activities. Our boarding houses offer a unique experience, filled with opportunities for personal development and establishing life-long friendships.

The respective sections on this website contain more information about each of these 3 entities that constitute Penryn College.

This year we celebrate 25 years as a beacon school in Mpumalanga and we encourage one and all to join us in celebrating the successes of our exceptional school through the special events taking place during the course of  2016.  Please visit the Quick View page for a link to our dedicated 25 year webpage.

Christian Erasmus
Executive Head of Penryn College

Parent Information

General Ethos

Penryn College believes that children inherently want to do the right thing, and as such positive behaviour is reinforced and encouraged.

Every scholar entering Penryn College is expected to follow the guidelines of the Courtesy Charter, a set of guidelines that outline the values and behaviours that we hold as revered, and abide by the behavioural expectations of the Disciplinary Policy. They are based on Christian principles.

Copies of the policy documents are available on the Quick View page under Downloadable Documents.

Making an Impact

The school continues to produce young men and women who will make a contribution to our country across a broad range of professions. Scholars are encouraged to involve themselves in the many outreach opportunities available, including those through Penreach.

The education offered at Penryn is not limiting and dogmatic, but 
rather encourages scholars to engage, debate and form opinions of their own.

Read the article about two Penryn Alumni that received the prestigious Mandela-Rhodes scholarship in 2015. Tessa Ware and Natasha Ashley were selected out of 5 000 applicants across the continent and are among 50 candidates who have received the scholarship. 


Penryn College provides a contemporary education which challenges, stimulates and excites. Scholars are taught by enthusiastic, passionate experts in their field, producing outstanding results.

Foundation Phase

The Foundation Phase curriculum gives prominence to the improvement of each child’s English skills, stresses the importance of play in learning, and provides a balanced age-appropriate curriculum.
Read More

Preparatory School Phase

The Senior Primary Phase curriculum is broad-based and encourages experiential learning, while at the same time preparing children for the academic standards expected of them in College.
Read More

College Phase

Scholars are taught in an environment centred on individual academic excellence. The focus is not only on achieving fine results, but on expanding minds.
Read More


At the heart of life at Penryn is the expectation that all will strive towards activities and behaviour that follow Christian principles.

A Chaplain is seconded from the Methodist Church of South Africa, who is employed to provide guidance and counselling for the Penryn family.

All scholars at Penryn attend Divinity/Religious Education lessons and Christian chapel services twice a week. Prayer meetings are held regularly during break times as are communion classes.

Visits to neighbouring churches, along with Christian camps and activities, add to the Christian ethos of the school.

Penryn College is an inclusive school and we welcome all religions. 



Penryn's latest news


Grade 8 & 9 Parents Evening – Thursday 23rd  March

A reminder that the Grade 8 & 9 Parents evening will take place on Thursday 23rd March.Nancy Grover and Collette Wright will present a short presentation on a study method course that they will be running at the College. The ACE (Academic Centre of Excellence) department at Penryn embraces this course, which provides good wholesome advice and teaches the scholars how to think their way into a positive lifestyle. Although this presentation precedes the Grade 8 and 9 parents evening, all parents are welcome to attend to this presentation. Nancy and Colette will be available afterwards to discuss any questions you might have.​                      

Time:               17:00 – 17:30
Venue:             Auditorium (next to the Community Hall)
Parents’ Evening at 18:00 – 19:30 in the Community Hall

Felixton Rugby Festival
Our 1st and 2nd rugby teams will be participating in the Felixton Rugby Festival at Felixton College in KwaZulu Natal this weekend.  We wish them a safe journey and the best of luck with all their matches.

Inter House Plays
The plays were once again a great success and of a high standard.  I comment each year on our talented scholars, and this year is no different.  Well done to the Directors, Script Writers and Actors.  You did a sterling job!
Congratulations to:
Best Actress Award:      Sonya van Rooyen    
Best Actor Award:          Siya Radebe
Best comedic play:        Kestrel
Winning House:             Kestrel, with Goshawk 2nd; Kite 3rd and Harrier 4th.

Congratulations to Oliver Ratnarajah (400m) and Bethal Makoni (Long Jump) who were selected to represent Mpumalanga at the South African Championship in Cape Town.  Oliver ran his 400m in 0.49 sec and Bethal jumped her best distance ever of 5.49m.  Truly remarkable achievements.  Best of luck at the championships!


Please see the latest College Newsletter for more details :College weekly 9 17 March


What a superb couple of evenings we have just had!  Those of you who managed to attend this year’s SP play would certainly agree with me!  Well done to all our Grade 4 to 7 scholars, our amazing moms who helped behind the scenes, our talented teachers who worked tirelessly both on and off the stage, and Mrs Jacqui van As, our writer and director.

 Alice Through the Flat Screen, was a completely original take on the story of Alice in Wonderland.  The story was narrated by Lewis Carroll, and started in the traditional way where Alice is bored and follows a White Rabbit down a rabbit hole.  Once she is inside the rabbit’s house she sees a flat screen.  Alice drinks a liquid labelled “Drink Me” shrinks (with the help of a smaller Grade 5 double of our Alice) and slips neatly through the screen.

After she walks through the flat screen she goes to Charlie and the Chocolate factory where the Grade 4s are minions.  From there she follows the White Rabbit to Narnia where the Grade 5s are warriors and dancers.  In the final scene she comes to Africa and meets Percy Fitzpatrick and his dog Jock.  The Grade 6s take the roles of the traditional dancers and animals.  She loves it so much that she decides to stay in the Lowveld.

Last Thursday was a picture perfect evening as the Preschool families gathered for their annual Teddy Bears Picnic. Excited children dressed in pyjamas and armed with torches played and explored until it was time to gather together to read some stories.  

The soft toys that the children donated were handed to the Penreach ECD department.  The ECD field advisors distributed the toys to ECD centres in Hlau-Hlau, Daantjie, Msholozi and Mataffin areas.  Thank you for your generous contributions.

The Penryn Prep scholars sat on the edge of their seats, as the knowledgeable and passionate, Pat McKrill "The Snake Man" presented an insightful session on snake education, the conservation of snakes and snake handling. This occasion symbolises one of Penryn's proud values in honouring our environment. 


This past week some of our Penryn swimmers participated in the South African National level 2 and 3 swimming championship galas and have definitely made Penryn extremely proud to have such fine swimmers in our midst. A few of our swimmers blew the rest of the competition away, and some achieved a few personal bests that they can be extremely proud of. Swimming has certainly picked up at Penryn and the improvements from our swimmers is becoming more and more tangible. The pool is becoming a home for our swimmers who have made it their own and continue to seamlessly improve as the years go on. Achievements are as follows:

Mikaela Goelst swam in 9 level 3 finals and achieved a bronze medal as well as 8 ribbons.Emma Beyers made it through to 7 level 3 final events and was awarded 7 ribbons.Tyla Van Zyl swam her heart out in 5 level 2 prelims.
Yuva Singh swam in 6 level 3 prelims and 1 final as Penryn’s best U/13 swimmer.  She also achieved personal bests in 100m freestyle, 50m freestyle and 50m backstroke and qualified to swim in the 100m freestyle finals.Erin Beyers showed some Penryn pride as a young swimmer in category in 4 level 2 prelims.
Dylan Ormiston raced in 7 level 2 finals and picked up a stunning 3 medals – 2 silver for 50m and 100m breaststroke and an especially impressive gold medal in the 200m breaststroke.Congratulations to our swimmers. We cannot wait to see them swim on to even greater heights.

Finally, we would like to wish all the swimmers who will be taking part in the South African Schools Swimming Championships this holiday all the best and we look forward to reporting back on some fantastic results.