MEC Kholwane says, education is not only a tool that shapes the mind of the learners to be self-reliant in the ever changing social and economic environment, but is also a vital component of a life process that all children must go through, so that, through what they gain from it, they can contribute towards building a better society for the current and future generations. Kholwane echoed these profound words of wisdom during his visit to Skhila Secondary School in Mashishing, Thaba Chweu Local Municipality.
The 2018 Schools Re-opening and Readiness Programme comes hot on the heels of the announcement by the President of the Republic, Mr JG Zuma that higher education for the poor will be free. The announcement by the President was welcomed by many as a short in the arm and will give new impetus to those learners who might have lost hope.
The programme is an annual programme whereby public representatives and government officials are deployed to primary and secondary schools across the Province to encourage learners to do better in their studies. This noble programme is a direct response to the clarion call by government to put education at the apex of its priorities.
“The fact that more than 40 percent of the provincial budget is allocated to the education sector is a clear indication that the Province takes education very seriously. The provincial government will continue to provide the necessary resources from the available financial resources to match the societal expectations for and to enable the learners to get basic education”, said the MEC to the applause of learners and teachers.
MEC Kholwane added that “I wish to encourage the class of 2018 to rise to the occasion and ensure that the school reclaim its rightful position and produce 100%. I also urge learners to respect their teachers and principal at all times”.
Of importance, this programme affords the schools an opportunity to raise the challenges they are faced with, which may lead to poor performance. It is also through this Programme that the deployed public representatives ascertain schools’ readiness right at the beginning of the school calendar year.
Amongst other things, the deployed were charged with the responsibility to ensure that the following non-negotiables are in place and ready:
- Readiness of the schools
- School budget
- Governance of the school
- Learning material
- Nutrition programme
- School Code of Conduct in place
- Schools Maintenance Plan
- Human Resource Development
- Understanding of roles and responsibilities by School Governing Bodies
MEC Kholwane also took this opportunity to encourage learners to focus their energies in education, saying “education is the only way to break the shackles of poverty. Start today to study before it is too late, in all quarters do your best this year”.
“I appeal to learners to allow the educators to guide them to a brighter future which is lurking ahead of them”, Concluded MEC Kholwane.