Are Teacher Assistant Applications For PYEI Phase VI Open?

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The Basic Education Sector's Presidential Youth Employment Initiative (PYEI) seeks to offer employment opportunities to South African individuals aged 18 to 34, with the goal of addressing elevated youth unemployment rates. Those participating in the PYEI may find roles as teaching and general assistants within schools.


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To address soaring youth unemployment in South Africa, the government initiated the Presidential Youth Employment Initiative (PYEI), with a specific focus on the Department of Basic Education through the Basic Education Employment Initiative (BEEI). This programme involves recruiting young individuals to serve as teaching and general assistants in schools.

The most recent phase, Phase 4, was initiated in late 2023. In the latest Medium-term Budget Policy Speech, Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana announced the extension of the PYEI.

However, the specific details regarding the inclusion of programmes like the Basic Education Employment Initiative (BEEI), which appointed teaching assistants, in this extension remain unclear.

Recently, there have been rumors and the spread of false messages regarding the upcoming Phase 5 of the initiative. These messages falsely claim that applications are currently open for the next round of teacher assistant positions, with a suggested starting date in April.

In response to this misinformation, the Department of Basic Education has issued a clarification:

Beware of a WhatsApp message circulating about phase 5 of the PYEI in Basic Education. It's fake news, please ignore it.

They further urged the public to "Be vigilant. Don't fall victim to fake news". Any updates on PYEI in the basic education sector will be communicated using the Department's official communication channels.

Once a new round of recruitments is announced, applications must be submitted on the SAYouth.mobi site, which is free to use and does not require any data. The system reduces bias, non-compliance, and subjectivity to the requirements of the employment initiative. 

Progress Of BEEI

In the initial phase, 320 000 young individuals were temporarily appointed as Education Assistants and General School Assistants in various public schools around the country. The employed individuals were trained to eventually be able to enter work in teaching Home Languages, First Additional Languages, Mathematics, Business, Commerce and Management (BCM).

Phase II took place from November 2021 to March 2022, followed shortly by Phase III, which started in April of 2022, and ended in August 2022. Finally, Phase IV started in March of 2023 and ended recently, at the end of September.

The Plan for Phase IV was to place 255 000 youth employees in public schools across the country. They managed to place 92% of that goal. In total, the initiative managed to place 235 939 youth employees. 

Suggested Article:

BEEI teaching assistants

More than one million employment opportunities were created through the implementation of the Basic Education Employment Initiative (BEEI). The initiatives great success has highlighted the need to it to be extended despite its looming completion.

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