Smooth start for thousands of KZN learners

Thursday, January 20, 2022

Learning and teaching began in earnest on the first day of the 2022 academic year for provincial schools, as thousands of learners in KwaZulu-Natal went back to school on Wednesday.

As part of the provincial government’s commitment to ensure a smooth start to the new school year, KwaZulu-Natal Premier, Sihle Zikalala, was out in full force to monitor functionality of schools in uMkhanyakude District.

Accompanied by the local leadership and Director-General of KwaZulu-Natal Education, Dr Nonhlanhla Mkhize, Zikalala visited Inkosikayingangathi Secondary School, Welani Primary School and Umtubatuba High School in the UMkhanyakude District Municipality, where he expressed his satisfaction that learning and teaching got off to a good start.

During the visits, Zikalala was armed with a checklist to evaluate educator attendance, learner attendance, delivery of learner support material, school nutrition, start of lessons, and involvement of the school governing body.

Speaking during the functionality visits, Zikalala said the provincial government is encouraged by the active citizenry demonstrated by the community surrounding some of the schools they visited.

“We also commend the dedication shown by educators. As government, we have had tremendous success in ensuring access to education, but it is critical that we start providing quality teaching and learning from day one,” Zikalala said.

The Premier reiterated that quality education is an apex priority for the provincial government.

“We need to focus on producing top-quality learners by teaching subjects such as Science, Technology and Mathematics, which will empower and equip learners with the requisite skills for the Fourth Industrial Revolution."

He encouraged parents to inspire all learners going back to school, from Grade R to Matric, to raise the bar by starting the school year with vigour and remaining committed until the end of the year.

More than 2.6 million learners, who have enrolled in over 6 000 schools in the province, were expected to report for the start of the 2022 academic year.

The provincial Department of Education said plans are in place to assist about 600 learners, who have not yet been admitted to class.

The department said it also expects “walk-ins” because of a variety of factors, such as movement of parents or guardians from one location to another. –

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