Schools to be merged

Winkie Dibakwane

Winkie Dibakwane

Fourteen Soweto schools are standing empty because of low roll-counts and may be forced to close down.

Pupils number less than 200 in most of these schools.

The only solution to this problem is to merge the schools, according to spokesman for the Gauteng Education Department, Panyaza Lesufi.

Lesufi said: "We cannot afford to have a teacher teaching only four children in a classroom, whereas we can group those children and teachers with those from a nearby school and utilise all the resources, like it happened with the merging of Orlando and Altem high schools last year."

Hardest hit are primary schools in Meadowlands, Diepkloof, Orlando East and Orlando West.

The major reason that affects the dwindling numbers in schools, particularly in Meadowlands, is that some parents have now acquired Reconstruction and Development Programme houses in Braamfischerville in Dobsonville and in Tshepisong, near Leratong Hospital.

"We are now forced to relocate and find alternative schooling for their children in these newly built schools," said a parent who wanted to remain anonymous.