How The Education Department Plans To Address School Infrastructure


With an overall budget allocation of R31.8 billion for the 2023/24 financial year, which marks a 7% increase compared to the previous fiscal year, the Department of Basic Education has emphasised the need to improve school infrastructure nationwide.



While delivering her 2023/24 budget speech on Thursday, Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga stated that the improvement of school infrastructure is among the department’s top priorities.

The minister confirmed that for the 2023/24 financial year, R13.9 billion has been allocated towards Infrastructure Delivery, while the accelerated school infrastructure programme has been allocated R2.1 billion.

She went on to point out that they have made significant progress in addressing the issues relating to the provision of sanitary facilities in more than 2,700 schools nationwide.   

“In 2018, we initially counted 3,898 schools that needed assistance, when we verified, we confirmed 3,398, so 2,722 schools have been provided appropriate sanitation with 673 remaining. And we can confirm that within this financial year, they will be completed.” Motshekga said 

In addition to this, the Basic Education Department has developed a ten-point infrastructure plan to accelerate the rollout of school infrastructure, which has also been adopted by the Council of Education MECs.

Through the ten-point infrastructure plan, the department also aims to fast-track the delivery of its school infrastructure programme by providing oversight and support to provinces through quarterly reporting on schools’ furniture needs and deliveries.

Motshekga added that these programmes will be delivered through the national education infrastructure management system and the education infrastructure grant. 

“This programme will contribute to enhanced teaching and learning by improving and upgrading infrastructure by March 2024 by, building 9 schools to replace unsafe structures, providing water to 1 school and providing sanitation to 350 schools.” 

The department has historically come under scathing criticism from stakeholders in the sector over the pace at which it addresses school infrastructure issues, particularly when it comes to the eradication of pit toilets in schools throughout the country.       

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