Back-to-school fiasco

As pupils in the Eastern Cape begin an uncertain school year today – with the Education Department admitting it is “not ready” – some Port Elizabeth schools are being mobbed by parents desperate to secure a “better” education for their children.

Education analysts and school principals said parents from some Bay townships were refusing to enrol their children in schools in their areas and had besieged northern areas schools “at the last minute” in the hope of securing a better future for their children.

But the problems for pupils begin at a much higher level than individual schools. Across the province, the first day of the term will see:

– More than 100000 pupils left in the lurch due to the suspension of transport for all schools, except farm schools;
– Teacher shortages after the contracts of 6000 temporary teachers were suspended late last year, and
– A total of 1130 schools classified as Section 20 schools will be without stationery after the tender was cancelled amid allegations of corruption.

Click here for more on this story in our e-Edition on Wednesday.

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