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KZN education department puts back-to-school plans on hold

KwaZulu-Natal schools will remain deserted for a little while longer.
KwaZulu-Natal schools will remain deserted for a little while longer.

The KwaZulu-Natal department of education has announced a postponement of the return date for teachers in the province.

This after the national department of education planned to have school management teams (SMTs) and principals back at school on Monday May 11 and the rest of the teaching staff back on May 18.

In a communique on Friday, head of department Enock Nzama said that due to unforeseen circumstances, schools and district officers needed to postpone the reopening.

“Due to the unforeseen circumstances, deep cleaning and other health-related issues have not yet been confirmed at all institutions. In light of this district offices, circuit offices and schools are hereby instructed to postpone the returning of workers and SMTs, including teachers, to schools until further notice,” he said.

The department also said that they were unable to give an exact date when schools and district offices could reopen.

“Since the department of education cannot really ascertain the exact date upon which the workforce can be expected to resume the 30% functioning stage, a formal communication will be issued in due course.”

On Thursday, it was reported that the Eastern Cape, Northern Cape and an education district in Mpumalanga had indicated they were not ready for staff to return.

This after it emerged that National Treasury had redirected the provincial education department’s order for personal protective equipment (PPE) to the provincial health department.

Bun Hopley, the provincial manager for the Federation of Governing Bodies of SA Schools in the Eastern Cape, confirmed that during an urgent Zoom meeting with Eastern Cape education head of department Themba Kojana on Thursday afternoon, they were informed that the Treasury had withdrawn the department’s instruction note relating to the delivery of PPEs.

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