Johannesburg- Schools must be encouraged to guide learners to make the right subject and career choices, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said on Sunday.
“When we announced results for the 2012 matric exams …we tried to explain that there are many avenues and options available to learners,” Motshekga said.
Speaking in Johannesburg at the closing ceremony of Nedbank’s annual national career guidance programme, an initiative aimed at helping high school learners choose suitable careers, Motshegka said government needed private partners to address the challenges in the country’s education system.
Nedbank launched the R17.4 million career guidance programme four years ago and has to date benefitted over 130 000 learners from grade 9 to matric from underprivileged communities across the country.
Organisers say this year alone, more than 24 000 learners were exposed to over 115 career choices from across 16 industries.
Motshekga said: “For us to make things happen, it would mean working together to open for all our people, the doors of lifelong learning, education and training opportunities, especially for the historically disadvantaged who were deliberately under-developed by apartheid rulers”.
She added that the message government had been sending was that education is a societal issue.
“Improving each child’s prospects of success in life is a precondition for addressing the developmental challenges we have outlined in the new development plan for the country. Government cannot do this alone”.
One of the beneficiaries, Grade 12 learner, Bernard Mnisi, said the programme has helped him gain valuable information on different careers.
“Before I attended, I only knew that I wanted to be a medical doctor but now I know that the career I want to pursue has a number of other fields, of which now I also feel more interested in like occupational therapy and education,” said Bernard.
Another learner Sizwe Shawe from Alexandra said: “The project brought to light that education is a very important aspect of life and it came at the right time as I have benefited from it as well as all the learners from my school”. – SAnews.gov.za