Published: 20th May 2020
COVID-19: Schools in South Africa to reopen from June 1 in a phased manner
The school curricula will also be drastically revised and extra-curricular activities such as sports will be prohibited, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said on Tuesday
Schools in South Africa will reopen in a phased manner from June 1 after a nine-week COVID-19 lockdown, bringing a drastic change in its curriculum and prohibiting extra-curricular activities like sports, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga said on Tuesday.
The Minister said that the National Coronavirus Command Council and the Cabinet have approved the reopening of schools from June 1. The school curricula will also be drastically revised and extra-curricular activities such as sports will be prohibited, Motshekga said.
"Independent and public ordinary schools will open even in the metropolitan areas, Motshekga said, adding that this was subject to every school adhering to the health and safety protocols. We will start with grades 7 and 12 (respectively the last grade in primary and high schools). The other grades will follow in due course.
All learners, educators and support staff will receive orientation and training at the start of the school reopening," the minister said. Motshekga said that in addition to these, the Basic Education Sector has psychologists and social workers who have had prior training on counselling and will be able to use their skills to support schools.
A revised school calendar and trimmed curriculum are being developed to make up for the lost time. It has become clear that the coronavirus has forced us to re-engineer the basic education system. A fundamental review of the system has become necessary if we are to minimise the impact on the sector in the long term. Schools must be aware that all curriculum enrichment programmes will be put on hold until further notice. School sports will not be permitted as they will increase the chances of infection and undermine our efforts of containing the coronavirus, Motshekga said.