Free State Education to build more schools

Thursday, March 1, 2018

The Free State province will build nine new schools in the upcoming year to increase their capacity and intake of learners.

Outgoing Free State Premier Ace Magashule made this announcement at his last State of the Province Address (SOPA), which he delivered on Tuesday evening.

“In the 2018/19 financial year, the department of education will build nine new schools throughout the province. This is in addition to the 14 new schools started in previous financial years, seven of which are expected to be completed in the 2018/19 financial year,” said Premier Magashule.

The building of the nine new schools will take place in the 2018/19 financial year, with the following schools projected:    

  • New Special School in Trompsburg
  • DR Sello Primary School in Viljoenskroon
  • Vogelfontein Primary School in Bethlehem
  • Morena Tshohisi Intermediary School in Harrismith
  • Katlego MpumeleloPrimary School in Sasolburg
  • Tweeling Combined School in Tweeling
  • Tshehetso Primary School in Bothaville
  • Tsebo Ulwazi Secondary School in Frankfort
  • Parys Primary School
     

Premier Magashule noted that some schools, which commenced building in 2017, will be completed in the upcoming year. These schools include:

  • Grassland Primary School in Bloemfontein
  • Grassland Secondary School in Bloemfontein
  • Bekezela Primary School in Sasolburg
  • Mooifontein Primary School in Zastron
  • Rehopotswe Primary School in Bethlehem
  • Hani Park Primary School in Welkom
  • Thembalihle Primary School in Vrede
  • TlholoPrimary School in Botshabelo
     

Magashule delivered his SOPA, despite objection from opposition parties in the legislature, who boycotted the event. The opposition parties said the boycott was informed by the idea that the Premier’s term has come to an end and he therefore cannot deliver a speech detailing plans for the province going forward.

Despite the controversies, Magashule reflected on the province’s achievements of the past year and outlined plans for the year ahead.

Magashule said the province had followed through in its commitment from the SOPA 2017, where it launched five Smart Schools and anticipates to complete the project by 30 March.

Magashule also noted that his province has completed the first phase of the implementation of a School of Skills in Qelo Primary School in Botshabelo.

“We have completed the first phase of renovations and we are currently busy with the second phase. Teachers have already been appointed and machinery and furniture will soon be procured.”

Improving the quality of education 

The provincial government launched the Quality of Learning and Teaching Campaign last year.

“Through this campaign, we established Quality Learning and Education Committees in each town, with a purpose to enhance community engagement and involvement per town, circuit and school,” said Magashule.

In its quest to improve mathematics learning outcomes, the Department of Education developed the Madeira Project, which saw four mathematics teachers from Madeira, Portugal, being assigned to 10 primary schools in each district.

School Governing Bodies elections 

Magashule further encouraged parents to participate in the elections of School Governing Bodies, which begin today.

“As part of enhancing governance and community participation in our schools, we urge our parents to participate in the elections of School Governing Bodies (SGBs),” he said.

The elections will end on 31 March.

Free State teachers scoop awards 

Magashule boasted that teachers in his province have “raised our flag high” after scooping top awards at this year’s National Teaching Awards.

Magashule congratulated the many teachers that bagged awards for their contribution to education.

“I wish to congratulate the teachers for their commendable performance at the Teaching Awards.” – SAnews.gov.za

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