Many pupils 'waiting for textbooks'

2013-03-18 22:24
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Johannesburg - About 54% of South African pupils claim they do not have all the textbooks they need for school, a survey revealed on Monday.

Forty percent said they had all their textbooks and 5% said they had no textbooks, consumer insights company Pondering Panda said.

"The experience of learners themselves once again shows that government is not doing enough to get textbooks into the hands of pupils," spokesperson Shirley Wakefield said.

"With more than half of learners saying they don’t have the books they need, it’s clear that the quality of education in South African schools is suffering tremendously as a result of this. But this is only half the battle."

For the survey, a total of 3 544 pupils across the country, aged between 13 and 24, were interviewed by cellphone and asked about their perceptions about the textbooks they had in school.

Pupils in Limpopo and Mpumalanga appeared to be bearing the brunt of the country's textbook shortages.

Only 27% of Limpopo pupils said they had all the textbooks they needed, compared to 69% who said they did not.

In Mpumalanga, 36% of pupils reported having all their textbooks, while 61% said they were missing books.

The survey showed the Western Cape was the best provisioned.

Most pupils complained the textbooks they were using were old or in bad condition.

Thirty three percent said the books were old, but still useable. About 21% said their books were most likely to be old, damaged and to have pages missing.

Eleven percent said their textbooks were new, but already in a bad condition.

Less than a third (31%) said their textbooks were both new and in a good condition.

The survey found that textbooks were regularly lost or went missing and that the replacement of books was slow.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  education

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