Please find attached soundbite by Baxolile ‘Bax’ Nodada MP.
The DA will write to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and request them to investigate the unjustifiable school regulations at the start of this year.
Regulations like the 1m social distancing rule and the implementation rotational time-tables at some schools will have far-reaching consequences on all aspects of learner development, including learner nutrition, well-being, mental health and most importantly, education.
Researchers and scientists of various disciplines have warned of the dangers of rotational schooling on primary school learners and in July 2021, the Medical Advisory Committee (MAC) recommended that primary schools should go back to full-time schooling, regardless of social distancing regulations.
The DA therefore urges Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga, to fully open schools.
With reference to the school stakeholder meeting scheduled tomorrow, the DA has urged the Minister to put the interests of school children ahead of any political considerations. This year’s matrics have had two years of disrupted schooling and lost more than 50% of their grade 11 year as a result of the school regulations under the pandemic. This was highlighted in Umalusi’s standardisation meeting.
Learner drop-outs are also increasing as many do not return to school due to continued disruptions. Last year the learner drop-out was sitting at 557 170 if you compare those registered in grade 10 to those who wrote their exams in matric.
Unless the Department of Basic Education steps in, this year will only see an increase in learner drop-outs based on increasingly difficult learning environments. The Minister must put our learners first.