Independent schools’ subsidies ‘not urgent’

2010-12-13 00:00

HIGH Court Judge Rishi Seegobin ruled on Friday that an application brought on behalf of independent schools in KwaZulu-Natal over subsidies is not urgent and struck the matter off the roll.

The KZN Joint Liaison Committee (JLC), representing some 116 independent schools in the province, is expected to pursue the application on a non-urgent basis in due course.

Advocate Omar Moosa SC argued on their behalf that the issue is urgent because some underfunded schools face imminent closure if the money is not forthcoming.

It was also suggested that it would cost the Education Department “10 times more” than the cost of the subsidies if it has to accommodate independent school pupils in public schools.

The JLC asked the court to order the head of the KZN Education Department to pay what it called a “shortfall” in subsidies owed to various of its member schools within 30 days, or at least a percentage thereof.

The department’s chief education specialist, Sibusiso Kheswa, questioned the urgency of the application.

He said the department has been put under pressure to file its response in a limited time, and he believes this had been “orchestrated” to prejudice the department’s opposition.

He pointed out that a circular was issued in May 2009 noting that there would be a reduction in subsidies to independent schools of about 30%, followed by various meetings.

Seegobin agreed that the JLC and its member schools have been aware since May 18, 2009, that the department is intent on reducing subsidies by 30%.

Legal steps were first initiated in June this year.

Under the circumstances he ruled the application lacked urgency.

Seegobin made no findings on issues raised in the case.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.