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Hunt is on for South Africa’s best teacher


Has your child’s teacher gone above and beyond? The National Teachers Awards offers an opportunity to celebrate South Africa’s best teacher.

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga
Applications open for the National Teachers Awards. Picture: GCIS/SAPA

FROM day-to-day classroom teacher to transforming to online teaching. This is just among the few things South Africa’s teachers have been forced to endure as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

And to celebrate that triumph, the Department of Basic Education is calling on teachers to nominate each other and even themselves for the Best Teachers awards.

The awards, which will be taking place later this year, were established 21 years ago with the intention of recognising, celebrating and acknowledging the strides made by teachers to ensure that learners are supported in order to progress from grade to grade.

“This edition will be conducted in a period where the country is confronted with a major pandemic of Covid-19, which has paralysed the schooling system in many different ways; and the DBE intends to conduct the 21st edition’s activities in adherence to the protocols as prescribed by the President of the Republic of South Africa,” the DBE said.

The teachers awards competition is open to all teachers in the public schooling sector registered in terms of the South African Schools Act.

“The work of teachers has now been further complicated by the emergence of the Corona virus which has disrupted the schooling sector in a manner never seen before.

“As a result of the extraordinary efforts made by teachers under extreme conditions the Department has therefore introduced new awards to pay homage to individuals who have demonstrated commitment, dedication, and sacrifice during crisis situations,” the DBE said.

Through the recently improved Teacher Appreciation and Support Programm, new categories have been added to the awards.

According to the DBE, the newly introduced categories pay homage to individuals who have demonstrated commitment, dedication, and sacrifice during crisis situations.

The categories include:

  • National Best Teacher Awards.
  • S/Hero Award and the Learner Award
  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • National Learner Award
  • Excellence in Maths teaching
  • Grade R teaching
  • Special Needs
  • Primary school teaching,
  • Secondary School Teaching

The full list is available here.

The 21st edition of the NTA process will be conducted in the following recommended manner: The process of nominating teachers will start at school level, and then proceed to the districts.

The same process will be repeated in the provinces until winners reach the final phase of the selection of winners by a national adjudication panel; and the final stage will be the celebration of teachers in a national ceremony which will be hosted by the Minister of Basic Education.

Entries close on 31 July 2021. All interested teachers are required to enter by obtaining a form via the Department website. Nominations forms are also available.

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