Sum of parts makes us whole

It is a reality that developing countries need to enhance their human and institutional capacity in mathematics and science to meet their developmental goals.

It is a reality that developing countries need to enhance their human and institutional capacity in mathematics and science to meet their developmental goals.

Hence the ambitious drive by Education Minister Naledi Pandor to promote and improve results in maths and science at schools - especially among the township learning institutions where historical challenges have led to poor results in these subjects.

But, as the minister points out herself, government efforts ought to focus at urgently producing more maths, science and technology teachers to stem the shortage.

Already South Africa is facing a serious skills shortage in information technology - something attributed to fewer pupils taking up science and maths subjects at schools.

But the project to produce more science and maths teachers can only achieve the desired objectives if complemented by improved conditions at townships schools. This is where the Education Department's Dinaledi programme, which aims to increase access to maths and science in township schools, is most likely to make a huge impact.

Realistic targets must be set as a matter of urgency to measure the success of the drive. This initiative must be coordinated together with the Science and Technology Department to ensure broader intervention at schools.

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