‘I never planned to fail’: Kearsney College student scores 6 honors | TBEN

  • Kearsney College is the top performing boysschool in KwaZulu Natal.
  • Kayden Robinson was one of the top performers, with six awards.
  • He has been accepted to study at Stellenbosch University.
  • The results of the 2022 IEB matrix are now available on TBEN! Find them here.

“There was no way I intended to fail the exam. I had to pass; there weren’t two ways to do it.”

These were the words of student Kayden Robinson of Kearsney College in KwaZulu-Natal, who collected six honors despite being unable to physically see his family for much of the year as he was at boarding school.

Kearsney is the top performing all-boys school in the county after the publication of TBEN Examinations Board (IEB) results for 2022 on Wednesday.

The college’s math and science program resulted in 46% of Kearsney boys earning honors in math (the IEB average is 26%) and 37% earning honors in science (the IEB rate is 18%).

It was the 12th consecutive year that Kearsney’s math and science grades were double those of the IEB, the school said in a statement.

Speaking to TBEN after receiving his results, Robinson said he was “extremely proud” of his achievements as the academic year was “very challenging”.

“Being in your final year of study is always challenging and stressful.

“My mother passed away a few years ago and my father works in Nigeria, so I never experienced the full support of my parents around me giving me advice or letting me know that they are there for me during this time.

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“Boarding school is tough, but studying alone and not knowing who to ask for guidance was really hard.”

He added that there would be some weekends when he would visit his grandparents in Bluff, but that came to an abrupt end due to the increase in shedding.

“The college has generators, so we could fully concentrate on our studies.

“If I had continued to visit my grandparents, I don’t think I would have succeeded so well because it would have been too much of a distraction.

“I think being in an environment where there were no excuses for not studying and having that drive to want to succeed really gave me the stamina to get through,” Robinson said.

The bubbly teenager added that he took seven subjects in the year with pure math being his favourite. He got 88% for this subject.

“I like problem solving, it puts the mind to work. There’s a formula for every problem you encounter and once you understand how to solve it, everything starts to fall into place, which I think is a bit like what life is like.

“I was lucky enough to understand the aspect of math problem solving at a young age and slowly over the years in school I started to enjoy solving those hard math questions and the more I started solving them, the more I started to like it.”

Robinson said talking and walking around college would usually calm him down when studying got too much.

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“Fresh air did me good, as did being in nature, because it opened up my brain so I could release some stress and think clearly afterwards.

“Playing with my team was also a bonus because it kept my focus and [I was] able to apply my mind to things other than my books.”

He added that he had not planned a failure, saying:

I am my own backup plan. I had no room for doubt. The only person I could completely rely on to give myself the life I want is me. And for that I had to pass the exam very well. Planning to thrive steered me in the right direction.

Managing Director Patrick Lees said he was delighted with the fantastic results.

“Kearsney’s number one priority is academic excellence, and we are delighted that five years of hard work by the boys, teachers and parents has paid off,” added Lees.

Robinson has been accepted at Stellenbosch University to study for a BCom, majoring in international business.

“I’ve been in boarding school for a long time and moving to the Western Cape feels like I’ve been freed from the shackles that kept me glued to my books and laptop until the finals were over.

“I am extremely grateful that I was given the opportunity to continue my studies and to finally see my dream unfold before my eyes, piece by piece. It has been a really tough year and I am so happy that it is finally over.”