South Africa: Only Three Grades Will Return to Class Next Week, Education Authorities Decide


Only three out of the seven grades scheduled to return to their classrooms next week will do so, according to the Department of Basic Education and other education authorities. This decision comes as the department faces mounting pressure from trade unions, parents and the courts to make sure Covid-19 safety requirements are met before more pupils return.

Only Grade 6, Grade 11 and Grade R pupils will return to school on Monday 6 July, the Department of Basic Education announced on Thursday 2 July.

Grades 1, 2, 3 and 10 were also meant to return on 6 July, according to the 29 June Government Gazette. In addition, pupils from schools of skills, schools for learners with severe intellectual disabilities, schools for learners with severe and profound intellectual disabilities, and schools for autistic learners were all meant to reopen on 6 July. The last batch of learners was scheduled to return on 3 August.

This latest decision will affect all provinces and the other grades will be phased in over July until "normality" is reached in August, according to the department. It will publicise the new plan over the coming weekend.

The decision was taken after Basic Education...

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