Safety of learners under the spotlight

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Parliament’s portfolio committee on Basic Education received a briefing on the progress made by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) regarding the safety of learners attending special schools so far.

We want to commend the department for the work done so far in implementing the recommendations of the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), although we realize some challenges persist. We will monitor the implementation of the remaining matters,” said Ms. Bongiwe Mbinqo-Gigaba, the committee chairperson.

In 2016 Ms. Mbinqo-Gigaba said, the National Treasury awarded the DBE a conditional grant of R477 million over the period 2017-2020 to address some of these challenges. She said the committee remains concerned about the minimal or lack of scholar transport provided to special schools.

“It cannot be that the parents of these learners struggle to get them to school.

To address weaknesses and shortcomings, the DBE has issued a circular to guide provincial education departments as they undertake the following remedial actions:


Assessing the situation at the designated schools to establish the extent of resourcing, conversion, and orientation required; and developing a business plan, containing a roadmap of what needs to be done by whom and by when to ensure the functionality of designated schools. This must include outreach services and linking the school with a special school as a resource center, where possible.

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courtesy of: Parliament