EDITORIAL | School closures reveal the real failures of SA ...

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EDITORIAL | School closures reveal the real failures of SA society

The water and toilet situation throws up the bigger human rights infringement in the wake of apartheid

Editorial

At least two former Model C schools are not sticking with the government’s decision to shut down learning for two weeks, according to a report in Sunday Times (https://www.timeslive.co.za/sunday-times/news/2020-07-26-former-model-c-schools-revolt-against-closure/) this weekend. Paul Colditz, CEO of the Federation of School Governing Bodies of South African Schools, says these schools are not breaking the law – not yet. This is because the revised school calendar, gazetted by basic education minister Angie Motshekga on June 11, was still in force on Sunday.

This emerges as the Rapport newspaper said many parties were waiting for the government to gazette the new dates, because they are raring to challenge them in court. Colditz told TimesLIVE Fedsas would wait to see the new regulations before deciding on court action. But perhaps Potchefstroom Gimnasium prinicipal Roelof Oosthuizen summarised it best for the public schools who want to continue learning: “We strategise and we plan and we make an effort to keep our school safe and give our children an opportunity, and then everything just gets swept off the table,” he told Rapport.

Last week, the SA Human Rights Commission described the school closure as “regrettable and unjustifiable”. It means that by August 24 more than 10 million schoolchildren, depending on the grade they are in, will have lost more than 50% of schooling – or 100 scheduled school days – as a result of Covid-19 school closures...

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