Schools continue to face admission chaos

Gauteng Department of Education spokesperson Steve Mabona.


Two weeks after schools opened for the current academic year, many parents are still facing the dilemma of placing their children in a school.

The Gauteng Department of Education had introduced the online application system to ease the long queues in schools. However, when schools opened, many parents who didn’t use the online application system joined long queues to various schools in search of admission for their children.

One of the parents, Pretty Ndlovu from Ivory Park who works as a domestic worker, was still looking for a school for her son going to Grade 8. “I am looking for a space for my son and nephew who is going to Grade 10. Both me and my sister live at work and we seldom get the chance to see the boys at home. I am worried that if I don’t find a school for them they will get involved in crime and drugs,” she said.

Another parent, Melita Makhubela, said she was looking for a school for her niece. “My sister passed away a week ago and her daughter must relocate and stay with me. I am now looking for a school for her.”

The department of education said the system was opened for late applications in November last year. During that period, they received 22 921 more applications, of which 22 309 have been placed. Since 13 January this year, an additional

13 155 new applications were received, and 10 780 have been placed.

The number of all placed learners is 318 544. A total of 176 702 for Grade 1 and 141 842 for Grade 8.

Currently, 3 366 children have not yet been placed in schools.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the parents for their cooperation, patience and understanding. We will do everything necessary to place all unplaced learners by the end of February and appeal for patience during this time,” said the spokesperson for the Gauteng Department of Education, Steve Mabona.

He also advised parents to accept offers of placements that may not be their first choice as many schools have reached full capacity. “The department remains convinced that the online application system is the way to go.

“It is convenient to parents and the department is able to place a substantial number of learners in a short space of time.”


Have you had a similar experience? Email your stories to [email protected]

Lungile Dube

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