Now that the country has moved down to Alert level 1 of the national lockdown, Basic Education Deputy Minister Dr Reginah Mhaule has applauded the Northern Cape Education Department for its dedication towards salvaging what is left of 2020’s school year.
“Schools in the Northern Cape are working tirelessly to ensure desired curriculum coverage before the 2020 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations later this year,” Mhaule said.
Mhaule, along with Northern Cape MEC for Education Zolile Monakali, embarked on a two-day oversight visit programme to Kuruman and Kathu this week, to evaluate the status of school functionality since all learners returned to the classroom a month ago.
Among the schools visited by Mhaule were Galaletsang High School, Gaegake Primary School and Deben Primary School in the John Toalo Gaetsewe District, concluding the visit at Kathu High School.
She said that schools and learners must be fully supported to improve the quality of passes and achieve a higher volume of bachelors this year.
The deputy minister also urged the province to help local primary schools to lay a strong foundation for learners in General Education and Training (GET).
Mhaule recognised the efforts made by at-risk teachers suffering from comorbidities who, despite being given permission to stay at home for longer, reported for duty this week.
She went on to say that - although the teachers reported for duty - the Basic Education Department and provincial Education Departments will not terminate the contracts of the substitute teachers in the sector.
"You may be well aware that due to social distancing phenomenon class sizes in several schools are undoubtedly cut down, leaving the sector in high need of additional teachers," the Deputy Minister said.
Mhaule reminded teachers, learners and members of the public to still follow the rules of the national lockdown and maintain social distancing, the wearing of face masks and hand sanitising at all times.
“As the basic education sector, we must take responsibility to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in our communities," Mhaule said.
MEC Monakali emphasised his support for all learners, especially Grade 12s, saying that the provincial department has finalised the matric intervention programmes which will unfold in October 2020.
“These interventions include weekend lock-in sessions, Saturday classes and extended spring camps. We are targeting close to 8 000 Grade 12 learners which will benefit from our final push activities ahead of the 2020 NSC examinations," Monakali said.