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KZN education department ready to welcome 2.8m pupils for new school year

The KZN department of education says it's ready for 2.8-million learners' first day at school on Wednesday.
The KZN department of education says it's ready for 2.8-million learners' first day at school on Wednesday.
Image: Gallo Images/ IStock

The KwaZulu-Natal education department says it's all systems go for the 2020 academic year as they prepare to welcome 2.8-million pupils on Wednesday.

Education MEC Kwazi Mshengu on Monday presented the province’s state of readiness at Sivananda High School in KwaMashu, north of Durban.

“We want to state upfront that the province of KwaZulu-Natal is ready for the 2020 academic year. As the department, we have done our best in preparing for the new school year,” he said.

The province, which last year had most matrics writing, is home to 6,000 schools and has 86,000 teachers.

Mshengu said although the department was still on a high from the 5.1 percentage point increase in the national senior certificate (NSC) pass rate, they would not allow this to distract them from improving in 2020.

“As we alluded to during the presentation of the matric results, while it is tempting to wallow in self-congratulations at this glorious achievement for long, we in the province of KwaZulu-Natal will not allow that, for it can lead us into a state of complacency,” he said.

Contingency plans have also been made for the 144 schools that were damaged during the April and November 2019 storms.

“We want to announce that we have put in place contingency measures to ensure that by January 15, all schools that were damaged by violent storms are operational," said Mshengu.

"The department has made arrangements to supply mobile classrooms. Procurement processes are at an advanced stage to provide material to rebuild the damaged schools."

Mshengu added that all textbooks and teacher support material had been successfully delivered to schools.

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