Race to catch up on 19 lost days for Vuwani pupils

2017-10-10 20:14
A Nyala police vehicle patrols Vuwani a day after a shutdown was launched. (File, Chester Makana, News24)

A Nyala police vehicle patrols Vuwani a day after a shutdown was launched. (File, Chester Makana, News24)

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Cape Town - The department of basic education is in a race against the clock to ensure pupils affected by protests that have shut down Vuwani can complete their examinations before the end of the school year.

The portfolio committee on basic education on Tuesday was updated by the ministerial task team, the SAPS and other relevant parties on how they responded to the recent shutdown in Vuwani.

The most recent shutdown ended on October 2, with students returning to school that week after losing, in total, 19 days of learning.

MPs heard that the department had secured the curriculum for affected pupils and that lesson plans had been plotted down to the day. Some pupils will be taught on weekends.

WATCH: A recollection of Vuwani's conflict

Matriculants that have started writing preliminary examinations will finish those on October 20, before their finals on October 24, giving them just four days to prepare.

In its presentation, the SAPS called on community members to help in restoring order to the embattled area now that the shutdown had been called off.

"Police cannot do everything. But we can do so with the help of the community."

SAPS ready for next shutdown

ANC whip in the committee Pinkie Mokoto said after the meeting that the committee was satisfied with the presentations and that there was a chance for the schools to complete the curriculum.

However, DA MP Ian Ollis said the prospect of another shutdown looms on October 17, a week before final exams are due to start for Vuwani matriculants. The SAPS delegation had revealed it earlier in the meeting.

The department must also consider how taking resources from the surrounding schools could impact on the performance of those schools.

The SAPS delegation said the police were prepared for another shutdown, but did not want to disclose the plans for risk of revealing them to protesters.

Community members have protested periodically since May 2015 over demarcation plans in the town.

They started protesting after the Municipal Demarcation Board removed their area from under the Makhado municipality and placed it under Lim345.

A total of 29 schools were burnt down at the height of the protests.

Read more on:    saps  |  polokwane  |  education

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