The reopening of schools for grade 7 and 12 has been postponed to 8 June by the Council of Education Ministers (CEM) on Sunday. This decision was taken during a meeting with stakeholders to share the outcome of the reports and the proposed course of action on Saturday.
Meanwhile the CEM said this week will be used for the orientation and training of teachers. The orientation and training of teachers aimed to ensure the readiness of each facility for the arrival of learners.
“This whole coming week must be used for the proper orientation and training of teachers, the mopping and ramping of all supply chain matters, and final touches to the readiness of each facility for the arrival of learners.” said the department.
This follows the announcement by Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga that learners will report back to school on 1 June. Motshekga spent the weekend in meetings with leaders of provincial education departments, teachers’ unions and school governing body associations, which had cautioned her to postpone the reopening.
The CEM received a report from the consortium of service providers, coordinated by the National Education Collaboration Trust, on the External Evaluation and Monitoring of the state of readiness. Rand Water, as an Implementing Agent delivering water to 3 500 schools, also presented its report.
Despite that the Heads of Education Departments Committee (HEDCOM) also presented its technical report. All three reports converged on the fact that a substantial number of schools would not be ready for the reopening on 1 June, although tremendous progress had been made by most provinces, which overall reflected an 80% state of readiness.
The CEM was concerned that, in some provinces, personal protective equipment for learners, in particular, had not been received. Additionally, some schools were not ready for the arrival of teachers and learners.