As parents and children prepare for the beginning of the 2017 academic year in Gauteng, some children still do not know whether they will be able to attend school this year.
According to Oupa Bodibe, spokesperson for the Gauteng Department of Education, on 9 January about 58 000 children still needed to be placed in schools across the province. This means that most of those children will miss the first day of school.
DA Shadow MEC for Education, Khume Ramulifho has reiterated his party’s call that all schoolchildren must be placed by the first day of school. “Gauteng Education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi must prioritise all learners who applied to be placed in schools last year to ensure they start learning from day one,” Ramulifho said.
He lamented that there were still many children who were yet to be placed, despite applying on time.
Ramulifho urged Lesufi to provide more resources to schools with high demand. “These include more classrooms, teachers and materials.” He said parents were put in a difficult financial position when their children were not placed, as they could not budget for uniforms and school fees. Adding that the online registration process should be used to plan and manage placements with necessary resources.
Meanwhile, Lesufi has assured parents that their children will be placed soon. The department has asked for patience from parents, especially those who applied late, highlighting that their children would be placed by at least the end of February.