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Zamani opens a new school

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‘Given the anticipated growth in pupil numbers we are moving mobile classrooms to strategic areas to address the overcrowding.’

PUPILS at Steynville Primary School in Hopetown will be greeted with a brand new school building when they arrive for their first day of the new academic year today.

The school was officially opened yesterday by Northern Cape Premier Zamani Saul.

The school was constructed to create more space for pupils as a result of the pupil growth numbers at Oranje-Diamant Primary School and the resulting overcrowding at certain schools.

According to the premier, the new school will now provide for effective learning and teaching for the pupils of Hopetown.

The school, with its modern amenities, has also brought about opportunities for local jobs and local businesses in Hopetown.

The MEC for Education, Mac Jack, who also officiated at the opening, said a number of key infrastructure deliverables will also be completed during the first quarter of 2020.

These include the construction of a large ablution block, new science laboratory, new media centre, a new five-classroom block, as well as repairs and renovations at Boresetse Secondary School.

At Jan Kempdorp Primary School, a double ECD classroom will be constructed, while the school will also be equipped with a borehole as well see repairs and renovations to existing ablution facilities.

Additional ablution blocks at 19 schools will also be completed.

The department has also delivered a total of 376 chairs and 350 desks for the 2019/20 financial year so far, while maintenance projects at 18 schools were also completed in the first and second quarters of the 2019/20 financial year.

“Given the anticipated growth in pupil numbers we are moving mobile classrooms to strategic areas to address the overcrowding,” Jack stated.

“All schools in the Northern Cape have access to water, sanitation and electricity. We will continue to do routine maintenance to schools and hostels, especially as it relates to the provision of water and sanitation.”

All schools in the Province, including the 520 public ordinary, the 11 special schools and 26 full service schools, have, according to Jack, been issued with their final educator staff establishments for this academic year.

A total of 117 schools will be losing posts, while 201 will be gaining posts.

Jack explained that schools were allocated educator posts based on their number of pupils for a particular year on a ratio of 1:32 in public ordinary schools and 1:12 ratio in special schools.

“A total of 38 appeals were received from schools, of which 22 cases were based on errors found on respective staff establishments. Subsequently the staff establishments of eight schools were changed with material difference, resulting in the overall allocation of seven more posts to the affected schools.”

Jack indicated that all revised educator staff establishments had been published and an explanatory letter was issued to schools via their respective district offices.

“Sixteen applications were related to a need for additional posts, which will be addressed in the beginning of the new academic year after the first 10 days of the school year when the pupil numbers are confirmed.”