Standard of education 'a crisis'
Johannesburg - The standard of education in South Africa and the fate of children who had been let down by dysfunctional provinces was concerning, the Cape Chamber of Commerce said on Thursday.
"The Minister of Finance, Mr Pravin Gordhan, has called on business to create jobs but business also needs educated people to fill the positions," chamber president Michael Bagraim said.
"If the schools are not providing people with the basic literacy and numeracy skills it becomes difficult to employ the school-leavers and the result will be this growing band of frustrated young people."
Bagraim said the problem was not funding but poor management and unions which blocked attempts to improve the situation in classrooms.
The chamber's executive director, Viola Manuel, said business needed to become more actively involved.
"We are dealing with a crisis and business needs to first acknowledge that we have allowed this situation to continue for too long."
She said she agreed with University of Free State vice chancellor Jonathan Jansen who said there was a lack of political commitment to take on the unions and under-performing provinces.
"Our political leaders have a lot to answer for, but business needs to be part of the solution if we are to have any chance of meaningful change," said Manuel.