Wednesday, 12 January 2022 10:14

Angie Motshekga pleased that learners are back at inland schools.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga says she is relieved that learners are back to school in inland provinces.

Motshekga is visiting three schools in Mohlakeng, namely Matlapaneng Primary School, Mohlakano Primary School and Phahama Secondary School.

Coastal schools will reopen next week.

Motshekga said classes will continue on a rotational basis in an attempt to curb the spread of COVID-19 and she will only get a proper report after her visit to the schools.

Schools are as ready as they could be. The reports I’m getting from all the schools that we’ll be visiting, is [about] the state of readiness, where they still have hitches with placements. I will not be able to give you the full impression about really comparing what I’m being told and what we have observed. But I’m just happy that we are back to school," added the minister.

The Basic Education Department said on Tuesday that the visits will also include a donation of school shirts and school bags donated by Mr Price and the MTNSA Foundation.

"The oversight visits come as the sector is getting ready to welcome back learners for the commencement of the 2022 academic calendar and with the sector having already welcomed back School Management Teams (SMTs) and teachers back to schools," the department said.

Motshekga is accompanied by the Acting General Manager of the MTN SA Foundation, Angie Maloka. The department said the foundation has also donated 100 tablets to be handed over to Phahama Secondary School.

"These visits provide an opportunity to further support schools while strengthening efforts to mitigate risk within school communities. Schools are still expected to adhere to the COVID-19 protocols to ensure the safety of both learners and teachers as they prepare to return to school in 2022," the department said.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Minister of Basic Education, Dr Reginah Mhaule, will also conduct an oversight visit to Khamane High School in Marapyane in the Nkangala District, Mpumalanga.

During her visit to the school, the Deputy Minister will also drive home the message of compliance with COVID-19 protocols to ensure the safety of both learners and teachers as they return to schools.

The Department of Basic Education has also tabled the draft Basic Education Laws Amendment (BELA) bill in parliament.

The bill, which was first announced in 2017, seeks to provide updated amendments to sections of the South African Schools Act. This includes stricter rules around student attendance, admissions and language policies.