Centenaries will not disrupt school calendar

Sunday, July 8, 2018

The Department of Basic Education on Sunday distanced itself from a message circulating on social media platforms stating that the reopening of schools will be delayed due to Mandela Day activities.

“We can confirm that message is false and must be ignored and deleted as it has caused much confusion in the basic education sector,” it said of the message claiming to come from the Office of the Presidency.

On 18 July, South Africa and the world will commemorate what would have been Tata’s 100th birthday. Mandela died on 5 December 2013, at the age of 95.

The department said originators of the message are seeking to create anxiety and uncertainty in schools. This as schools are scheduled to open on 17 July.

“The Department has official channels of communication with all our schools, and does not communicate such important information via social media. Our schools went on recess on 22 June and will resume on 17 July 2018 as per the school calendar approved two years ago.

“We expect all our learners and educators alike to report for duty as scheduled in order to commence the third term without any further delays.”

The department said the Mandela and Sisulu Centenary celebrations will proceed without causing disruptions in schools.

“Both Mandela and Sisulu were committed to playing their part to ensure that all young people in South Africa access education without disturbances. This malicious social media message is therefore contrary to what both our late leaders stood for.

“We would advise that those who receive the message to inform the sender that it is fake news and delete the message to ensure that further confusion is averted,”  said the department.

On Friday, the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on the Centenary Celebrations of Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu said this year’s 18th of July will not be observed as a normal International Mandela Day, where citizens’ across the globe donate 67 minutes of their time performing only acts of good deeds to those in need, but will be used as an opportunity to remember the time in which transformation gained traction in the beloved country and celebrate the man who made a meaningful contribution. - SAnews.gov.za