WC teachers and parents protest, deploring further opening of schools

WC teachers and parents protest, deploring further opening of schools

- The Basic Education Minister has announced dates for the return of the rest of the grades to school and parents are not happy

- Teachers and parents protested this morning in the Western Cape, crying about the lack of adequate resources to accommodate more learners

- Western Cape Education MEC Debbie Schafer has also been slammed for her tactics

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Yesterday, the Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga confirmed more return dates for some grades amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Grade 7 and 12 learners returned to school on 1 June and on 6 July six more grades will be returning to school.

There have been many protests with regards to the reopening of schools and across the country, waves of teaching staff and learners have been contracting the Covid-10 virus.

READ ALSO: Lockdown is here to stay as government seeks to avoid 'Black October'

This morning, concerned teachers and parents in the Western Cape protested the premature reopening of schools.

EWN reports that over 300 staff members and 61 pupils had tested positive amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Fiona Southgate, a member of one of the school governing bodies (SGBs), was one of the protesters this morning. She deplored the lack of enough educators and adequate space in the schools.

She said:

"We don't have enough space in the school. We need 61 classrooms with all the other grades coming in. We only have 30 classrooms. Our educators are down to 31. We don't have the capacity to teach nor do we have the PPEs or anything to practise social distancing."c

Southgate said she was disturbed by the revelations that the MEC for Education, Debbie Schafer, giggled when she spoke about a handful of principals.

The demonstrators also carried placards with writing that 'Debbie must sit down'. The parents and teachers felt that she is not sympathetic to the needs of the vulnerable schools, said Southgate.

Schafer has allegedly been using 'bullying tactics' such as issuing warnings to principals who are standing up for the rights of learners and teachers.

Motsekga has emphasised safety in the reopening of other grades on 6 July. However, Motshekga added schools can deviate from the phased approach and if parents do wish to send their kids to school amid Covid-19 fears, then they can home-school the kids.

Equal Education General Secretary Noncedo Madubedube said that it is the responsibility of the school's HODs to facilitate this home-schooling process.

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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