Eastern Cape Education committee assesses Uitenhage district schools

JANUARY 14, 2016

A delegation from the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature Portfolio Committee on Education on Thursday visited schools in the Uitenhage Education District to assess their readiness for the new academic year. 

"The schools visit is an annual programme of the Legislature aimed in assessing schools readiness at the beginning of each school year in terms of what is happening in our institutions of learning," said Bulelwa Ganyaza (CPRP), Senior Manager: Media Liaison in the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature.

"The delegation led by the Committee Chairperson, MPL Fundile Gade, comprising MPLs, Legislature and district officials, Uitenhage District Forum and stakeholders with an interest on Education, visited two schools in KwaNobuhle-Uitenhage.

"In Phaphani High school the delegation was alerted of pressing issues which needed urgent attention. The School principal, Mr Mzwandile Coba advised the Committee on the status of the school highlighting its challenges."

According to Ganyaza, Gade indicated that these engagements help provide institutional support and in finding remedial measures on reported challenges.

"The school matric pass rate dropped last year from 33 % to 26.5%. Over the last 3 years the school performed below 50%. In 2013 the school obtained 29.4% with a slight improvement of 33% in 2014, the Committee heard.

"As the Committee we also  noted  that  the  recruitment  strategy  of the  department  is  not  heading to  the  call  of  a  teacher  in front of a learner. This was after the school reported a deceased educator in April 2015 who was only replaced in January 2016. We advised in such instances for the use of walk-ins on contractual basis until the recruitment process is finalised, said the Chairperson," she said.

Last year alone the school encountered five burglaries where their computer laboratory was also broken into, the Principal reported.

"The Committee Chairperson stressed that district intervention is needed in this school and in the feeder schools as well for quality output. The District Director was requested to reflect on their turnaround plan for the school," said Ganyaza.

"Solomon Mahlangu High School on the other hand proved to be a shining example in the District and the province. The school continues to produce good results with a 76% pass rate this year. The school also produced a top learner in the district with 7 distinctions.  The Committee is expected to compile and consolidate its report with findings for tabling in the House."