Minister Angie Motshekga and Council of Education Ministers re-evaluated the strategy to save the 2020 academic year on 02 July 2020 and agreed that Grade R, 6 and 11 are to return to schools countrywide on 06 July 2020.
Mr Paul Colditz, the CEO of Federation of Governing Bodies of South African Schools (FEDSAS) said his organization is happy that young learners are allowed to return to school based on the medical expert advice that the COVID-19 risks to young children are very low and even non-existent.
“Children are not transmitters of the virus as such it is much better for them to return to be taught in a controlled environment about the health protocols. We support their return,’’ he said.
Basic Education Minister, Ms Angie Motshekga said the reopening of schools will be adjusted based on the risk-adjusted strategy which is considered to balance the approach to schools reopening taking into account all factors that affect the work done.
“We are guided in this by an observation of the rising numbers of community transmissions throughout the country. We recognize that schools are based in communities and learners live in the same affected communities and therefore a careful balancing act must be maintained,” Ms Motshekga said.
Unsettled parents in Soshanguve, are terrified by the announcement connected with the return of pupils to schools on selected Grades. They are fearful that their children might contract the virus in the process.
Ms Fikile Xaba (26), has a child who started Grade R earlier this year and said, ‘‘I feel frightened with the fact that my child will have to return to school during this scary time of COVID-19.
“Teachers have to carefully monitor and educate our children to not exchange masks and practice social distancing at all times.
“Our children are irresponsible and still young to understand the situation that we are facing, otherwise our children would easily contract the COVID-19 virus, this is so scary,” said Ms Xaba.