'I think unions and teachers strong-armed the president to close schools'
President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation on Thursday evening on the re-opening of schools and the disruption towards the management of resources devoted to fighting against COVID-19 pandemic.
Regarding the opening schools, he mentioned that over the past few days the Department of Basic Education has had a meeting with more than 60 organisations representing parents, school governing bodies, principals, educators, independent schools and civil society organisations.
The government has decided it was best to close schools from 27 July until 24 August,with the exception that the grade 12 learners and teachers only take a one-week break and grade 7 learners take a two-week break.
He said throughout the break, the National School Nutrition Programme will continue to operate and that all learners or their parents can collect food directly from schools.
Listeners tackled Clement Manyathela's question as to “who runs this country” and whether the government is being bullied to make decisions or is simply listening to the public.
Caller Tom said it felt like neither the president nor the government oversees what is happening in the country.
You are asking who is in control of this country, definitely not the president and definitely not the government.Tom, Caller
Caller Thokozani felt like the president was strong-armed by the teachers union in closing the schools but says this will benefit most public school teachers, such his mom as the Department of Education has failed to prepare schools with adequate personal protective equipment.
I think the teachers unions and teachers strong-armed the president to close schools.Thokozani, Caller
Another caller by the name of Michelle says the closing of schools will widen the gap between public and private school learners as private school learners will be able to carry on with school as they have proper personal protective equipment.
This will be a case where the rich will get richer and the poor will become poorer.Michelle, Caller
Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga will provide details on the management of the remainder of the school year.
Listen below for the full interview ...
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