Lesufi explains why some learners are not yet placed

Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said he expected over 99% of grade 1 and 8 pupils who applied on time through the online application system to be in class on Wednesday morning.

FILE: Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi briefs the media on 14 January 2020 on the status of school admissions for the new academic year. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - With thousands of pupils without a school on the first day of the 2020 academic year, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi on Tuesday said his department was administratively ready to accommodate them.

Lesufi said he expected over 99% of grade 1 and 8 pupils who applied on time through the online application system to be in class on Wednesday morning.

The Education Department said it was struggling to place some pupils because of late registrations, outstanding documents and other issues.

Wednesday marks the start of the 2020 academic year for pupils in the public education system, with thousands of them expected to begin their schooling careers.

In Gauteng, thousands of parents are still scrambling to find a school.

The MEC attributed this to several issues.

“You still have parents that feel where we have placed them, they don’t want that.”

He's appealed to parents to co-operate with the department as popular schools have reached their capacity.

“We don’t want to underestimate the importance of choice but there are other schools that are better than the ones our parents prefer.”

To mitigate the high influx of pupils in the province, the department has partnered with some private schools for help with accommodating pupils.

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)