The Congress of South African Trade Unions in Limpopo province enters the new academic year of schooling with an optimistic outlook for learning in 2023. The Federation wishes and encourages learners and educators a highly productive year in their learning and teaching activities.
This optimism towards the new academic year however is dampened by a number of observations that we have made that continue to bedevil the education system in the province. We call for the outstanding issues concerning admissions to be speedily resolved and that infrastructure challenges be addressed to ensure learners and staff have a healthy and safe environment to learn and teach. In the same vein, scholar transport should be adequately provided to guarantee safe transportation of learners between home and school.
We also urge the provincial Department of Education to resolve the issue of relocation of schools to avoid the displacement of the learners and educators in terms of the distances.
Additionally, we have become aware that some schools use conditions such as language and the exorbitant increase in school fees, at fee paying schools, as exclusionary measures. This practice is unacceptable and should be policed by all stakeholders. At non-fee-paying schools, learners are compelled to bring items that should, in the course of events, be covered in the norms and standards treasury allocations.
COSATU condemns in the strongest terms the impulsive changing of school uniform by some school management without proper consultation of parents and guardians in these depressed economic circumstances, bringing hardship to families that must now procure new uniform. This goes against the Federation’s long held belief that education is a human development that should be afforded to every person regardless of their financial means or that of their parents or guardians.
The Limpopo Department of Education should meaningfully consult with all stakeholders, including our affiliate SADTU, in the education sector to find solutions. Furthermore, the participation of communities must not be overlooked. They should be allowed to make input about their welfare.
Issued by COSATU Limpopo
Mark Shope House
79A Biccard Street