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Schools welcome another wave of pupils

The Eastern Cape Department of Education is pleased to inform residents of the province that all preparations have been made to welcome Grades 3,6 and 11 back to school tomorrow.

Learners that are also doing their Year 2 and 3 in the School of Skills as well as some learners with severe to profound intellectual disabilities and autistic learners in their final year, will also be making their way to school tomorrow.

This marks the first week of return in a five week series, which will result in all grades being back at school by the 17th of August 2020. We have already had 5% of schools (259) welcoming some Grade 3,6 and 11 learners across our districts. As it stands 4726 of 5253 schools are ready to welcome the learners back at school. The remaining 5% or so have infrastructure and water issues which are being attended to as speedily as possible.

The number of learners in schools means that various options will have to be explored as we deal with the new normal that is COVID-19. Most schools have low attendance which means that the status quo will remain and learners will attend school everyday. But for some platooning, alternate days and weeks rotation will be explored. The department implores communities and parents to support them as they find solutions to the problems that may occur.

As more learners go back to school, the department is pleased to inform parents that all schools that have the National School Nutrition Program running have received their funds. Social partners and community members are encouraged to assist in ensuring that learners who need it are fed. The department has also identified over 117 000 learners who qualify for scholar transport and their names and routes have been given over to the provincial Department of Transport. The department is currently ferrying 12 888 Grade 12 and 7 learners to school as part of the first phase of reopening.

Right at the beginning of the reopening, ECDOE had spoken to educators to ascertain the need for substitutes as a result of comorbidities.when need arises, they are going to look into their central database of qualified educators and matching those with the need. 

“As a Department we are well aware that learners are also affected by these comorbidities and we implore schools to stream lessons from classrooms where possible and use the rollout of ICT to contact the learners and support their progress. We expect that learners who are home due to comorbidities will be contacted 3 times a week,” said MEC Fundile Gade.

He added that during this COVID-19 season, we have seen a total of 190 learners, 775 educators and 98 non-teaching staff test positive for the Coronavirus. This has resulted in 283 schools to be temporally closed, while 644 schools closed and reopened after positive cases were found. Unfortunately the virus has claimed to 18 fatalities in our province which some are our educators. "We once again wish to convey our deepest condolences to the families of those educators, learners and non-teaching staff who have succumbed to COVID-19.

“We are adjusting to the new normal that is presented by COVID-19 and will continue to do our best in beating this invisible enemy. While we celebrate Mandela Month, we honour our late statesman, former President Nelson Mandela, who spoke of all of us having a responsibility to create access to a good education. In this COVID-19 time, we honour his memory by saving the academic year, while doing our best to save lives. Education remains the one powerful weapon through which we can change the world,” said MEC Fundile Gade.

Content created and supplied by: AnelisaMtshizana (via Opera News )

Eastern Cape Department of Education National School Nutrition Program School of Skills


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