Farewell, Miss Mintoor

BY Administrator

In 2016, we welcomed our new Arts and Culture teacher, Miss Mintoor.  Miss Mintoor took over the role of Choir teacher for the junior and senior choirs, a role which she felt honoured and privileged to hold.
Miss Mintoor recalls, “Before joining the Riebeek team, I didn't know what to expect and was quite nervous until I met Mrs Woods who was a delight and immediately I knew that I was meant to be part of this group. Mrs Woods told me that she had been waiting a long time for me! I still have a special connection with her as we are each other's fans."
On arrival, she felt at home at Riebeek, and she hoped that musical activity would grow in the school and that her love and knowledge of music would impact the lives of the girls so they could shine. She believes that, “Being a teacher is a special gift as there is no other profession, in my opinion, that requires you to have so much patience, determination and motivation with the reward of making a difference.”
Despite having such an obvious love for teaching, Miss Mintoor did not always intend to become a teacher.  This all changed when she received the offer to work and further her studies at the Drakensburg Boys’ Choir School in Kwa-zulu Natal. She spent 7 years there.  This experience shaped her love and passion for teaching, especially teaching music. Returning to the Eastern Cape was quite special as she could once again be reunited with her family.
Miss Mintoor recalls meeting the Senior Choir after a week of settling in at Riebeek.  She recalls being amazed that a group of girls who come from different backgrounds had one special thing in common, and that was the love of singing. She writes, “Having heard about the accolades of the choir under the direction of Mrs Rene Zietsman, I knew that I had my work cut out for me to continue the legacy that she has left behind. I will always remember the beautiful singing, the heart and soul of their voices and the electrifying atmosphere that they create when they sing in front of an audience. The musical journey I had with these girls has truly been magical.”

The Junior Choir have always been Miss Mintoor’s "babies" are her "hart se punt".  The amazing growth of these girls is something that cherishes and she enjoyed the pride and joy of these girls when they could finally sing in two-part voices. She loved their angelic voices and their performance on national television.

Miss Mintoor’s obvious love, knowledge and passion for teaching and her passionate soul will be missed. We will remember what we call the Mandela Mintoor Marathon, where she energetically marched the senior choir up all the flights of the Uitenhage Provincial Hospital to march them down again floor by floor with performances on each level.  She conducted them with patients and staff passing and bumping but without her missing a note.  We will remember her role as Staff Christmas Party elf.  We will reflect on her diagnosis of diabetes and how she showed resilience and fortitude, quickly learning the ropes of managing her condition and advocating for the condition.  We will remember watching the junior choir and Miss Mintoor on the big screen in the Applous competition. Then there is the Mintoor Muscle effect, the after-effects of the gumboot dancing workshop Miss Mintoor arranged for the Senior Choir Camp of 2018.  Miss Mintoor found herself in a youtube tutorial style workshop as we made a video so that classes could practice for our secret Operation Love project of performing “All you need is Love” for the September farewell assembly for Mrs Woods Senior with flash mobs of learners and staff playing instruments.  She wowed audiences at the Junior School concert, From Marilyn, with Love, and at Mrs Woods’ farewell cocktail function at the end of 2016.
Miss Mintoor’s school work was neat, her ability to multi-task profound and her talent extra-ordinary.  Fiesty, determined, ambitious and goal orientated; there was never a dull moment with Miss Mintoor around.  Willing to laugh at herself and to enjoy a good laugh with others showed her lovely personality while her serious take on hard work and self-discipline motivated the learners in her care.
Miss Mintoor loved travelling to work with Mrs Shelver. There was not a thing that they didn't talk about. The white BMW was a secret haven. Miss Mintoor appreciated the words of encouragement of Miss Meyers and the common ground they found as colleagues and friends. Miss Mintoor truly believes that the choirs at Riebeek are the best girls’ choirs on the planet. She loved the fun in the classroom, especially with the juniors, where singing, dancing and noisy dramatic activities were fun.

Miss Mintoor writes, “My chapter at Riebeek has now come to an end and I will now locate to Cape Town where I accepted a full time music post at Western Province Preparatory School in Claremont. This is a great opportunity for me as I will be going back to my first love, and that is to teach and make music. I'm excited for this new adventure and I am thankful to our Heavenly Father for granting me this opportunity. What's also pretty cool is that I will also be closer to my boyfriend after a year in a long distance relationship. 
I don't even know where to begin to say thank you, but first and foremost all praise and honour goes to God, my Lord and Saviour for allowing me this time at Riebeek. It is only through His grace that I have made it through. I appreciate my family who continuously support me in all my ventures. Without their blessing and prayers, I would never have been where I am today. Mrs Stear, Mrs Snyman, Mrs Woods Senior and the Riebeek staff are thanked for  the role that each and every one has played in my time at Riebeek. You guys totally rock.”

"Ora et labora, will always stand the test" are words that Miss Mintoor will keep in her heart. At times when things were tough, Miss Mintoor reveals she would sing the last line of the special school song and know that things would work out.

 April 28, 2019
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