News24

Parents abandon public schools

2009-11-23 21:04

Johannesburg - More pupils are attending private schools than before, according to the results of a survey released on Monday.

The number of children attending independent schools increased from 256 283 in 2000 to 366 201 in 2008. This is an increase of 4.2% compared to a 1.9% increase in public school attendance, according to the survey conducted by the SA Institute of Race Relations.

Gauteng recorded the highest number of pupils in private schools in 2008.

"The huge increase in the number of those attending independent schools is a sign of lack of confidence in the South African education system," said researcher Marius Roodt.

"It shows that a growing number of parents are opting out of the state education system."

KwaZulu-Natal was the province with the highest number of pupils attending public schools while the number declined in four provinces.

The Eastern Cape recorded a decline of 4.3%, Free State 11.9%, Limpopo 5.1% and North West saw a 5% decline.

Roodt said these figures should give the department of education some food for thought.