WC to prevent school overcrowding

The Education Department hopes a new system will help it prepare better for the annual influx of learners.

Western Cape Education MEC Donald Grant and police joined forces to tackle truancy in Athlone. Picture: Malungelo Booi/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Education Department will use a new system to help it prepare better for the annual influx of learners from other provinces.

The Geographic Information Systems aims to improve infrastructure planning and help prevent overcrowding in classrooms.

The plan was prompted by the continual influx of learners into the province.

Western Cape Education MEC Donald Grant said the system will help officials see which schools are under and over utilised.

He said it will help officials determine which schools need extra resources.

Grant said underutilised schools will be closed and then handed over to the Department of Public Works.

Last week, a principal from South Peninsula High School in Deep River broke into an empty primary school building as his school is overcrowded.

The principal said they have been waiting on the Department of Public Works for years, but nothing had been done.

However, the Department of Public Works went back to lock the gates.

In March, Premier Helen Zille came under fire after calling Eastern Cape pupils "refugees".

She said many come to the Western Cape in search of a better education.

Zille later apologised for her utterances saying she never meant hurt anyone.