IN QUOTES | Angie Motshekga on schools opening for 2021

15 February 2021 - 09:20
Basic education minister Angie Motshekga says the latest available figures indicate 1,169 teachers have died as a direct result of Covid-19.
Basic education minister Angie Motshekga says the latest available figures indicate 1,169 teachers have died as a direct result of Covid-19.
Image: GCIS

Basic education minister Angie Motshekga says the demand for space in schools, especially in grades 1 and 8, remains a challenge for the sector.

Motshekga was briefing the country on Sunday about the state of readiness for the reopening of schools on Monday.

The latest amended school calendar published by the department last week confirmed classes would resume on Monday for 2021.

Motshekga said all provinces are experiencing a high demand in areas.

Here are five quotes from her address:

Pupils allocated space by next week

“Provinces have made good progress with placements, but there are still 16,117 pupils awaiting spaces in schools. The council of education ministers (CEM) met and the matter of school admission was identified as critical because the system cannot afford to see any pupils left behind.

“It was agreed provinces would work with speed to place all the pupils in the next week. The CEM appeals to parents and guardians to co-operate with officials at the district level to accelerate the placement process.”

Staff shortages due to Covid-19  deaths

“The latest available figures indicate 1,169 teachers have passed away as a direct result of Covid-19. This year alone, up to Friday, the number of deceased teaches stands at 159, and for non-teaching staff we have recorded 63 deaths. This is heartbreaking, and we convey our sincere condolences to the affected families.”

290,000 assistants hired

“The sector has welcomed close to 290,000 young people who have been employed on contract as education assistants and general school assistants. These young people have been employed in our schools  as the sector’s response to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s fiscal stimulus package announced in April last year. We call this the basic education employment initiative (BEEI).”

R7bn allocated for BEEI

“A portion of the R7bn allocated for the BEEI is targeted at saving posts funded by school governing bodies in public schools and government subsidised independent schools. We are working hard to ensure the delayed payments for some of these young people are addressed immediately.”

Matric results to be released in record time

“We are on schedule for the release of the 2020 national senior certificate exam results on February 22, and candidates should get their statements of results on February 23 from their schools.”


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