Millions of children head back to school

2013-01-16 10:08

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Durban - Millions of schoolchildren returned to school in KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday morning.

Traffic was backed up at several schools across Durban as parents dropped off their children.

KwaZulu-Natal education department spokesperson Muzi Mahlambi said there appeared to be fewer parents arriving on the first day of school to register their children.

"There will no doubt be pockets of parents [arriving late], but we had a massive campaign which [the media] helped to publicise. We think that was effective," he said.

Mahlambi said education MEC Senzo Mchunu had visited Grantam Park Primary School in Richards Bay, where he found teachers already teaching.

The MEC is expected to visit 30 schools during the next three days.

Stationary shops busy

On Tuesday stationery shops across the province were busy as parents made last-minute purchases of school books for their children.

At the Waltons Stationery branch in central Durban there were two long queues of people buying school necessities.

KwaZulu-Natal regional sales manager Handelee van Zyl said that the company's stores had "been absolutely hectic".

She expected a brisk trade for a few more days as parents and students bought those items they had forgotten to purchase prior to the start of school.

She said it was too early to say if business had been better than in previous years, but she expected it to be similar to last year.

While there may have been children upset at leaving the comfort of their parents, a few parents could be seen outside Durban's Parkside Primary school looking slightly dazed at letting their young ones out into a whole new world.

Last year there were some 2.8 million children enrolled in schools operated by the KwaZulu-Natal education department. Mahlambi said the department would be able to provide total enrolment figures in a week or two.

 


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