It's official: Schools will reopen on June 1 for matrics and grade 7s

Basic education minister Angie Motshekga
Basic education minister Angie Motshekga
Image: Kopano Tlape/GCIS

South African schools will reopen on June 1 - starting with grade 12 and 7 pupils.

And when the doors are opened after a two-month hiatus due to the coronavirus lockdown in SA, pupils will return in a staggered fashion.

This is according to basic education minister Angie Motshekga, who was speaking at a press briefing on Tuesday evening.

"The national coronavirus command council and cabinet has approved the reopening of schools as of June 1. We will start with grade 7s and 12s," she said.

Motshekga said the revised school calendar will be gazetted "soon". This would indicate the opening and closing dates and the breaks in between.

"The coronavirus has brought a lot of anxiety to us as a nation. I am aware that parents and children, teaching and non-teaching staff ... have been asking questions over the future of the academic year and what is going to happen to them and the academic year," she said.

"There was always certainty that schools will have to open."

Safety remained of the upmost importance, she said.

"The key principles that had to guide our work was to be informed by the safety of learners, the safety of teachers and our workers in schools, and also ensuring that, as we plan to reopen schools, it does not contribute in any way to the spread of the virus."

This is a developing story.