South Africa: There Is a School Near Each of Us Which Needs Our Help

opinion

Schooling is in the process of resuming but under dramatically changed circumstances. Most of us have a school near us - we can all help to get them up and running again.

After more than nine weeks of lockdown, teachers have returned to schools while grade 12 and 7 learners will return on 1 June. This was confirmed by President Cyril Ramaphosa on the evening of Sunday 24 May. He also emphasised that parents were allowed to school their children at home and that there had been wide consultation. Nevertheless, the country is divided.

Unions are not convinced that all schools are ready. According to the Suid-Afrikaanse Onderwysersunie (SAOU), 73% of schools have indicated that they are ready, while teachers' unions Naptosa and SADTU have asked members to remain at home if their schools are not fully ready. Worldwide it is clear that where significant success has been achieved in combating the virus, political leaders could depend on a culture of unity among their citizens. Therefore, the debate in education circles will be of concern to the president.

Spare a thought for the school principals. They are under extreme pressure. One aspect which needs urgent attention, is replacements for teachers...

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