Meet one of Gauteng's luckiest Grade 8 learners

17 January 2018 - 13:25 By Kgaugelo Masweneng
Gauteng education department technicians work on the admissions website. File photo
Gauteng education department technicians work on the admissions website. File photo
Image: Panyaza Lesufi via Twitter

Thirteen-year-old Anathi Madwantsi is anxious about making his foray into high school on Wednesday. But he is one of the lucky ones.

So‚ now‚ his only worry is the usual teen troubles.

“This means I will have to make new friends. I don’t know what to expect because it’s a new school. I’m a bit anxious‚ but I am looking forward to the challenge‚” the teenager said.

Anathi is among the lucky Grade 8 learners who got accepted at a school in Gauteng‚ as many learners have not yet been placed. Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says his department is ready for the schooling year‚ though 33‚000 learners still need to be placed. School placements are a perennial problem for the province‚ which attracts thousands of migrants each year to the economic hub.

Anathi‚ who wants to pursue a career in sports management‚ said he was looking forward to extracurricular activities at Ferndale High school in Randburg.

“I am looking forward to playing sports. Though I don’t know which ones to choose‚ I love soccer. I also want to play rugby‚ chess and cricket‚” the youngster gushed.

Anathi’s mother‚ Cebisa Madwantsi‚ said she would support her son throughout. However‚ she had no idea how he would juggle all the activities and his school work.

“He was excited yesterday but he woke up and told me he was very anxious. I am here to support him. Whatever career path he wants to follow‚ I’ll be behind him 100%. He used to be confused but right now he is into sports‚” said Cebisa.

“He kept telling me‚ ‘Mamma I’m anxious‚ this and that.’ But he couldn’t wait. He didn’t say much but then he is excited that he is starting a new school. It’s a new chapter for him.”

While driving to school‚ Anathi was busy fixing himself and combing his hair to “make sure he looked look”.

“I'm excited and nervous for him. He clearly has mixed feelings about starting high school. But I know it will all go well‚” his mum said.

The department said in a media briefing on Tuesday that it managed to persuade parents of about 2‚565 to consider alternative schools over their preferred one.

Meanwhile thousands are parents are still fretting about their children’s academic year.