On Wednesday, 20 March 2012, Equal Education (EE) will hold its last public hearing on Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga’s draft Minimum Norms and Standards for School Infrastructure (Norms and Standards) in Cape Town. Learners, teachers, parents, concerned citizens and organisations will attend the public hearing to make submission on the draft Norms and Standards. The public hearing will be chaired by Justice Zak Yacoob.
DATE: 20 March 2013
VENUE: Good Hope Centre (corner of Sir Lowry Road and Christiaan Barnard Street)
The objective of these draft Norms and Standards is to set basic standards with which school infrastructure must comply. Minister Motshekga’s draft norms and standards are disappointing. It is a weak document that offers vague definitions and avoids commitment or timelines. It merely directs the Minister to release guidelines which avoid any mechanism for ensuring accountability and providing proper redress for failing to meet standards.
The public hearings will allow learners, parents, teachers and community members to comment on the draft. EE invites people in the Western Cape to participate in this commentary process as this is an important opportunity to hear the voices of ordinary citizens, youth and learners and encourage them to make submissions to the Minister.
Minister Motshekga will consider these submissions when she drafts the final Norms and Standards. Hundreds of people have already attended public hearings in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu Natal, Gauteng and Limpopo. More information on the public hearings is available online. [https://www.equaleducation.org.za/campaigns/minimum-norms-and-standards/pubhearings]
SCHOOL INFRASTRUCTURE IN THE WESTERN CAPE
Out of the 1,464 public ordinary schools in the Western Cape:
- 1,082 schools don’t have functioning libraries,
- 1,205 schools don’t have functioning science laboratories,
- 971 schools don’t have functioning computer centres [SOURCE].
Last year, EE collected affidavits from schools across the country. At Meadowridge Primary School in Mitchell’s Plain, there are sufficient flushing toilets for the students but they are in a state of disrepair. The principal, Norman Daniels explained:
“The pipes are very old and have corroded, the lids are broken, there is no tiling, and there is urine seeping into the cement. It is unhygienic, and some parents instruct their children not to use the toilets at the school….The poor state of the toilets means that many learners do not go to the toilet all day which also then affects their concentration in class. It is also extremely unhygienic and we even had 2 separate cases where learners caught Hepatitis C from the toilets… An adequate learning environment is one in which there is no health risk…” [PDF]
There is parking available in the basement parking structure of the Good Hope Centre.
For more information please contact
Yoliswa Dwane (EE Chairperson) on 072 342 7747
Kate Wilkinson (EE Media Officer) on 082 326 5353
Gina Fourie (Organiser) on 071 682 4515