Late enrolments a headache
With only days to go before the deadlines expire, fears are mounting of a final rush to enrol tens of thousands of pupils at schools across the country.
The Gauteng education department is saying nothing about its plans but the KwaZulu-Natal department has expressed concerns about last-minute attempts by parents to enrol their children.
Coastal schools open on Wednesday next week and inland schools this week.
KwaZulu-Natal education department head Nkosinathi Sishi yesterday said late enrolments were "a huge problem".
He said that though the department had done everything it could, and though textbooks and stationery had been delivered to schools, the problem was late enrolments.
"It is a big worry for us. We have always had a problem of late registration. We are worried that we will have similar long queues on the day schools reopen."
He said the department had asked parents to buy school uniforms early but "it seems we are not winning".
"We are warning parents that this year we will only make an exception to late registration where the family had to relocate. We will not entertain this under any other circumstances," Sishi said.
Sishi said the premier had ordered all MECs and mayors to visit schools to monitor their reopening.
"It's part of our comprehensive monitoring plan to ensure that we are able to deal with whatever problems arise in time," he said.
The Gauteng education department refused to comment on its late enrolment plans.
Gauteng education spokesman Charles Phahlane said MEC Barbara Creecy would make an announcement on the province's state of readiness tomorrow.
He said the province has about 2million pupils enrolled at its 2200 schools. Thirty-five schools were opened last year and nine more are due to be opened this month.
Western Cape education said it was ready for the new school year.
Sadtu Western Cape secretary Jonovan Rustin said the union would establish a call centre to assist parents whose children have not been placed at a school.