‘Change starts with education’

2017-06-13 06:03

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Children cutting classes has become a cause for concern in the Ottery area.

In response to an earlier article (“Cutting school fears”, People’s Post, 23 May), James Rodgers feels that the problem is not limited to Lotus River.

“Here in Ottery you also see children wandering around in their school uniforms,” he says.

“I’ve also noticed that sometimes these learners, especially those in high school, hang around just outside the fence of the school where they are bunking. In some cases they then start interfering with the children who are at school and want an ­education.”

Rodgers adds that during Youth Month schools should start a special awareness programme to highlight the important part education played in the fight against ­apartheid.

“We should make learners more aware of the importance of this month and the role that children just like them played in the struggle. Our new country may not be perfect, but with education the change starts with them. But it can’t happen if they don’t go to school.”

Jessica Shelver, spokesperson of provincial education MEC Debbie Schafer, says that in terms of truancy, the Safe Schools Directorate has field workers who assist schools with investigating allegations of truancy through home visits.

“They also assist with facilitating the assessment of truant learners and placement for interventions with the support of the educators, parents and the circuit team,” she says.

“Our Safe Schools field workers also liaise with support structures to assist the school and community with creative and sustainable structures to deal with truant and at risk learners.

“It is important that schools, parents and members of the public report these cases to the Safe School Directorate so that they can assist.”

V Parents and members of the public can report truant learners to the Safe Schools Call Centre on 0800 45 46 47.

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