Scholar Recruitment

SSP helps students reach their highest potential through education

Our Scholar Recruitment process is broad in reach and rigorous in searching for learners who will ultimately be placed on the programme. Our recruitment period is from 1 June to 31 August annually. We collect thousands of applications in urban areas, peri-urban areas, townships and outlying areas of Johannesburg, Pretoria, East London and Grahamstown. We achieve this through a network we have developed over the years, that consists of feeder schools, community centres, township-based education programmes, not-for-profit organisations, and libraries. We also have focused outreach activities each year, including activations in high-density areas. Finally, we have partnerships with various print and broadcast media organisations, where we put out a call for applications.

We then take each application through a screening process to ensure that all requested documents and academic reports are attached. We pay particular attention to the scholars’ academic results – ensuring that the criteria is met as follows: 70% + in English, Maths and Natural Science and an overall report average of 70% and above. We look at the disclosed income statements of parents and guardians, to shortlist learners who come from low-income households. Once the applicant has been screened, they go through the first phase of selection:

Selection Process:

  • Entrance Exams
  • Interviews
  • Differential Aptitude Test (DAT)
  • Adolescent Self-Perception Inventory (ASPI)
  • Finalist Day
  • Selection & Placement

Entrance Exams:

Applicants who meet our basic application criteria are invited to write a benchmarking test for English and Mathematics. We test their comprehension and critical thinking skills, rather than content.


We conduct two-part interviews, for social and financial assessment of each applicant and their family. Interviews are conducted by a panel of volunteers consisting of SSP staff, SSP alumni and carefully selected volunteers.


The Differential Aptitude Test (DAT) is administered by an external specialist service provider, and serves to map each learner’s potential across five indicators, namely: Verbal, Non-Verbal, Computation, Memory and Reading skills.


The Adolescent Self-Perception Inventory (ASPI) is an EQ test, which is written to understand where each applicant sits on the emotional intelligence spectrum.

Finalist Day:

An outdoor camp takes place, to ensure maximum participation and to let the applicants have fun! Applicants are observed by the SSP Recruitment and Academic Team, who look at how well applicants participate in group activities, their communication skills, team orientation, leadership potential and communication with peers. A leadership and teen motivation workshop is also done here to empower applicants.

Selection & Placement:

After careful observation of all applicants, a panel sits to review each application. Applicants are matched to our Partner Schools. Ultimately, the SSP Scholarship is awarded to between 30 – 50 scholars each year.

The application phases take place over a period of 10 months.

Comprehensive Support Services

A 5-year programme

The SSP High School Scholarship is a 5-year programme that offers a suite of support programmes to assist the Scholars to reach their potential holistically.
It is a rigorous programme aimed at developing future leaders in all sectors of South African society.

  • Tuition
  • School uniforms
  • Sports gear
  • Books
  • Educational excursions

Academic Monitoring

  • SSP undertakes detailed academic performance monitoring and facilitates interventions and support measures to ensure that SSP scholars learn and excel academically, and otherwise
  • SSP facilitates provision of extra lessons and/or consolidated classes for Scholars when this is required
  • SSP requires 65% and above in all subjects from Scholars 

Parent Support Forum

  • The SSP Parent Forum ensures that parents’ voices are heard in decision-making processes
  • It aids in future improvements to the High School Scholarship programme
  • It develops and engages in activities which support the education and welfare of SSP Scholars
  • It encourages links between the SSP Parents, SSP, Scholars and the wider communities affected 

Scholar Council

  • The SSP Scholar Council aims to serve the collective interests of all SSP Scholars. The Council aims to encourage and nurture a positive relationship between SSP and its Scholars.
  • The Council aims to make Scholars comfortable at their respective schools and to make students aware of what extra assistance SSP has for them.

Mentorship Programme

  • Each scholar is paired with a dedicated Mentor to ensure that an additional support structure is made accessible for the SSP Scholar
  • Mentors guide, support and motivate SSP Scholars
  • Mentors expose SSP Scholars to their chosen careers, and their professional networks
  • SSP provides training to the Mentors and Mentees and advises Parents on the selection process, to ensure that everyone is on board.

 Alumni Relations

  • SSP’s Alumni Relations programme assists with university applications,  facilitates funding for tertiary studies, and offers internship and employment opportunities for Alumni
  • Once the SSP scholar has graduated from the SSP programme in Matric, that SSP scholar becomes an Alumnus. There is an Alumni programme to facilitate networking and camaraderie amongst the SSP Alumni 

Psycho-social Support

  • SSP has proven that with the necessary intervention and support measures in place it is possible for Scholars to overcome challenges, learn from experiences and excel academically and otherwise
  • SSP facilitates and encourages the use of all resources available to prevent scholars from underperforming and, in turn, to ensure a gratifying SSP experience.

For more information, please contact us on (010) 443 4578 or by email:

What happens if I don’t win an SSP Scholarship?

SSP Funding & Resource Guide

The SSP Funding and Resource guide is for all learners and parents who applied for the SSP Scholarship and were unsuccessful at any point in the process and for the greater feeder school community. It draws on the experience of SSP to identify quality high school education institutions and provide access to established relationships with like-minded youth organisations, both from a parent and the learner’s perspective.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes! Whether you are applying from Gauteng or the Eastern Cape, all applicants have to be in Grade 6 at the time of application.
You must be a South African citizen or have legal refugee status in the Republic of South Africa. Permanent residents are not eligible for the SSP scholarship.
SSP scholarship recipients attend one of our SSP Partner Schools. Scholar placement is a collaborative effort between SSP and the Partner Schools.
Emails are accepted but faxed applications will not be accepted. Completed application forms can be emailed or are to be hand delivered to our offices or designated library collection points.
Eastern Cape applicants to be notified on where to drop off application forms.
Gauteng applications to be hand-delivered to: SSP Gauteng, NBC Building, 22 Ridge Rd, Parktown, Johannesburg.
For more information, please mail:
You have completed the preliminary application process when you have delivered the application form, complete with your personal information, school report, birth certificate copy, parents/guardian ID copies and parent/guardian financial information (payslips or affidavits) to us.
You must:
Be in Grade 6.
Be not older than 12 years of age at the time of application.
Achieve an overall average of 70% or more in Grade 5.
Have a 70% minimum aggregate for mathematics, English and natural science.
Be in financial need – less that R 200,000.00 combined annual household income.
Have leadership potential.
Be community service orientated.
Final selection is made by the Student Scholarship Programme Panel. The Panel reviews the applications and interviews the finalists.
Applications are now closed and the recruitment is in process. Successful candidates will be informed about the details of the entrance exam by telephone and email.