Top kids will study maths

Getrude Makhafola

Getrude Makhafola

The acute shortage of skills in engineering, computers and communications, and financial management will be lessened by getting pupils to perform better in mathematics and other technical subjects.

The Joint Initiative on Priority Skills Acquisition (Jipsa), led by Deputy President Mlambo-Ngcuka, pictured, plans to reward schools whose matric pupils improve in mathematics at the higher grade.

The schools will receive R1000 for each pupil.

Jipsa wants South Africa to be producing 50000 artisans a year by 2010.

Massive infrastructural projects have created a huge demand for such skills.

"We have identified areas of critical shortage, such as engineering.

"The education department has allocated a budget to train more people in these sectors.

Mlambo-Nqcuka said more attention should be given to childhood development.

The national spokesman for education, Lunga Nqengelele, said the department welcomed any measures that encouraged pupils to study mathematics.

"We even appealed to parents to encourage pupils in this regard.

"We welcome such measures as suggested in the Jipsa report," said Nqengelele.