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Joint media alert: Equal Education returns to the Western Cape High Court to ensure the immediate placement of all out-of-school learners in the Western Cape

13 May 2024

Joint media alert: Equal Education returns to the Western Cape High Court to ensure the immediate placement of all out-of-school learners in the Western Cape 

#SofundaSonke

Today, Equal Education (EE), together with five parent applicants represented by the Equal Education Law Centre (EELC), will return to court to ensure the immediate placement of all unplaced learners in the Western Cape’s Metro East Education District. Part of the relief sought is remedial or catch-up plans for learners who were placed late in schools and for the Head of Department of the Western Cape Education Department to produce an investigative report for having failed to timeously place learners in schools. The report should shed light on the challenges faced by the Metro East Education District and, more importantly, would be relevant for the planning of the upcoming school year in dealing with applications. 

While we have faced various hurdles throughout this matter, we trust that the High Court, as the upper guardian of every child in South Africa, will protect the rights of children who remain unplaced without access to basic education or remedial support while awaiting placement. We are hopeful that it will recognise that children remaining without a school, five months into the 2024 academic year, is a gross violation of learners rights and must be addressed with urgency. 

Our decision to litigate follows a lengthy series of attempts to engage the Western Cape Government on placing out-of-school learners. Our attempts have been met with indifferent responses followed by “legal gymnastics” detailed in media statements released on 24 April followed by 26 April

Today we are in urgent court to ensure the Western Cape Government provides unplaced learners with access to school, puts in place remedial catch-up plans for learners placed late in schools and  provides a detailed report on why learners are continuously robbed of critical learning time and how the admissions crisis can be sufficiently dealt with in future. EE and the EELC will remain resolute in ensuring the placement of all learners. #SofundaSonke – no learner should be left behind!

When: Tuesday 13 May 2024 

Time: 10:00am 

Where: Western Cape High Court, Keerom Street, Cape Town

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To arrange a media interview, contact: 

Sesethu August (Equal Education Communications Officer) sesethu@equaleducation.org.za 

WhatsApp: 083 890 8723

Call: 063 221 7983

Leanne Jansen-ThomasJoint media alert: Equal Education returns to the Western Cape High Court to ensure the immediate placement of all out-of-school learners in the Western Cape