Gauteng allocates over R1bn for education

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Pretoria - The Gauteng Department of Education will be spending more than R1 billion to improve the quality of teaching and learning in 1 183 underperforming primary and secondary schools.

Presenting the department's R25.9 billion budget for 2011/12 on Tuesday, Gauteng Education MEC Barbara Creecy said the department will this year invest in improving the quality and sustainability of primary, secondary and special education schooling across all grades and phases including Grade R, ABET and FET college education.

The department will focus on teacher development and also strengthen school management and institutional capacity to support learning and ensure effective curriculum management and delivery.

"To address the quality of teaching requires us to invest time and money to enhance the educators' competence, the Teacher Development Strategy seeks to improve teachers' content knowledge and delivery in the key subjects where learners are failing to meet standards," MEC Creecy said.

Creecy said the province is currently spending R170 million on teacher development in the schooling system and a further R37 million is spent on Grade R and Pre-grade R training in the province.

The department has identified 2 700 Grade R practitioners for training and upgrading. A total of 1 200 Grade R practitioners, 674 practitioners on Level 4 and 526 on Level 5 will undergo formal training to upskill them to achieve the minimum requirements qualifications of a formal teacher's qualification (REQV 13) by 2014.

R25 million will also be spent on the training of 1 500 pre-Grade R practitioners in collaboration with for community-based ECD facilities regulated by the Department of Health and Social Development.

The department is also spending in excess of R56 million to support foundation phase teachers (Grades 1 to 3) with over 6 500 teachers in the grades being developed in literacy and numeracy and receiving training in supporting the rollout of the literacy and numeracy strategy.

"They are receiving training in teaching phonics, reading and using workbooks in the classroom, they are also being supported in improving teaching in the language of the specific classroom they teach in.

To address problems in the Intermediate Phase (Grades 4 to 7), where learners have problems in learning in English as a language of teaching and adjusting to mathematics after completing three years of numeracy, approximately 5 000 teachers in the Intermediate Phase will receive training from September on the teaching of English First Additional Language and mathematics," Creecy said.

Over 3 500 English, Mathematics, Science and Accounting Teachers across the Senior Phase (Grades 8 and 9) will receive training to support areas in the curriculum where learners are underperforming and where teaching is not of standard.

She also announced that training for 6 000 teachers in the Senior Secondary Phase (Grades 10 to 12), commenced in April and they are receiving training and support in the identified 10 subjects including Maths Literacy, Physical Science, Life Science, Accountancy, English First Additional Language, History, Geography, Business Studies and Economics.

Furthermore, over 4 500 members of school management teams in underperforming secondary schools will from August receive training on how to develop and implement Subject Improvement Plans, the training will focus on curriculum management, teacher monitoring and support, and managing assessment standards in schools.

The department has also conducted competency assessments of 975 principals and deputy principals to identify areas of improvement for better management of curriculum delivery at school level, 650 principal and deputy principals have already been trained on teacher performance management, strategic planning and financial management.