South Africa: Provincial Education Departments Set to Fail Again to Improve Infrastructure At Public Schools


Sunday 29 November marks the deadline for provincial education departments to provide enough classrooms, electricity, water, toilets, perimeter fencing, telephones and internet for all schools. This is according to the legislated norms and standards for school infrastructure. Despite this looming deadline, provinces are nowhere near to fulfilling some of these obligations.

The promulgation of the legally required school infrastructure norms and standards in 2013 signalled a new beginning for South Africa's public schools most affected by poor infrastructure.

Ntsiki Dlulani, Equal Education's (EE) head of organising in the Western Cape, was in Grade 11 at the time. She was also an active member (Equaliser) of the EE community.

"We had pickets, night vigils and [at some point] slept outside parliament. We understood the impact of education and so we kept fighting.

"What motivated us at the time was that we never wanted our younger sisters and brothers to suffer from the same inequalities in the education system that we did," Dlulani said.

EE had campaigned for uniform norms and standards for school infrastructure in SA's schools.

Now, years later, Dlulani still sees the inadequacies and tardiness of the department of basic education (DBE) and provincial education departments (PED) in implementing...

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