No teacher shortage, assures Basic Education

No teacher shortage, assures Basic Education

The Department of Basic Education has denied claims that the country is facing a teacher shortage. 

Learners in the classroom with teacher
Learners in the classroom with teacher/ iStock

It says the opposite is true, and there is, in fact, an oversupply of teachers in the system. 

It's been responding to a recent study by Stellenbosch University which raised concerns over a looming shortage of skilled teachers.  

The study revealed that roughly half the country's teachers are nearing retirement age...which might lead to a decline in the quality of 

The department says that although 49% of educators working in public schools are over the age of 50, new graduates are being upskilled to teach priority subjects. 

Spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga says that through bursaries, they've been able to boost the number of teaching graduates.

"Retirement happens every month end, with every month end is somebody's birthday who has reached retirement age and as they retire new people are employed to take up those places. 

"It has never happened been the same in the history of this country that we have bulk retirement. The system needs 10 000 teachers every year, but Higher Education Department is producing 33 000 teachers every year." 

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