News24

R24bn for KZN education

2009-08-04 22:05

Johannesburg - Better school principals, more schools and fewer teenage pregnancies were some of the promises KwaZulu-Natal education MEC Senzo Mchunu made in his budget on Tuesday.

"There is pressure on them to perform at a high level in their management of schools," Mchunu told the provincial legislature in Pietermaritzburg while tabling his R24.6bn budget for the next financial year.

To help achieve this, 198 principals had been selected to study for an Advanced Certificate in Education Management, at an average cost of R11 000 per principal per year.

Teenage pregnancies, implementation of the current curriculum, the quality of teachers and destructive activities at schools would also get attention.

"We are extremely worried about the stream of destructive activities seemingly engulfing some of our schools and learners, particularly the supply of drugs and alcohol to learners.

"We are negotiating with a number of partners to fight these social ills, including improper relations between teachers and girl learners and teenage pregnancies."

Refurbish

Improvements would be made to classrooms, sanitation facilities, electricity and fencing to improve learning conditions.

Mchunu said the department hoped to build 15 new schools, 1 750 new classrooms, 530 specialist learning spaces, 50 nutrition centres, 3 000 toilets and 100 administration blocks.

At least 180 schools would also receive water supply, 160 proper sanitation facilities, 122 would get electricity and 300 would be fenced.

The MEC said R224m had been set aside to refurbish schools in the province.

A total of 131 schools would be declared no-fee schools, bringing the total number in the province to 3 513.

The department's adult literacy programme, which heralded 360 000 graduates, would continue to operate.

Mchunu said it expected another 171 000 adult learners to graduate as R68m had been allocated to the Masifundisane programme.