Schooling will return ‘under strict conditions’ – Ramaphosa

Schooling will return ‘under strict conditions’ – Ramaphosa

In his weekly letter, President Cyril Ramaphosa has reassured parents and caregivers that all measures have been put in place for a safe return of pupils to schools.

Cyril Ramaphosa
Photo Cred: GCIS

Grades 7 and 12s were supposed to return to class on Monday, but a last-minute decision by the Department of Basic Education saw the resumption of the academic year postponed by a week.


This followed concerns from unions and governing bodies over schools’ readiness to combat Covid-19.


Ramaphosa says the government has been engaging everyone in the sector..


"In the last few days, several of these stakeholders – including teachers and parents – have expressed concern about the state of readiness in many schools. We have heard them, we welcome their contributions and are taking steps to address their concerns as well as proposals.


"It is understandable that many parents and caregivers have mixed emotions at this time about the reopening of schools. There is relief that children will be able to resume their education after a prolonged absence from classrooms and lecture halls. Young people are eager to be in school again and to see friends and teachers.”


The president admits that parents want reassurance that the necessary precautions are in place to protect children.


He says the health and safety of pupils is non-negotiable.


"As we prepare for the gradual re-opening of our schools and places of higher learning, education authorities have been hard at work putting the necessary health and safety measures in place. That documentation regarding standard operating procedures have been provided to all schools. These standard operating procedures cover issues like training and orientation of screeners, timetable realignment and configuring classrooms to meet social distancing requirements.


Ramaphosa adds: "We are continuing with the process of delivering personal protective equipment and ensuring the availability of water and sanitation services. Learning, once it commences, will take place under strict conditions with a correctly limited number of learners and students.”



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