More than 26?000 KZN grade ones

2011-01-19 00:00

SCHOOLS are ready for the start of a new academic year. That’s the word from both the KZN Department of Education and private school regulator the Independent Schools Association of South Africa (Isasa).

Last year, 2,7 million pupils were welcomed in about 6 000 schools in the province, while the figure of the newest members into the system, the grade ones, was 250 395. Both these figures are expected to increase by at least five percent, department spokesperson Mbali Thusi said yesterday.

Meanwhile, Isasa has 121 member schools in the province, which collectively had 23 650 pupils last year.

“Generally, all our members are pretty ready for the new school year. We have not received news of any problems,” said Simon Lee, Isasa’s communications manager. Lee expects the new crop of pupils this year to move last year’s figures to above 25 000.

While there might be more independent schools in the province, Lee said these schools don’t need to join Isasa, they just need to be registered with the department. “Isasa assist their members upon enquiry on particular issues such as issues involving curriculum, issues on best practice which has to do with questions on contracts and disciplinary action,” said Lee. He said they will be collecting data on the enrolment figures next week and are likely to know the exact numbers toward the end of the month.

One area that might be an issue for independent schools this year, Lee believes, is that of financial sustainability and fee payment since some parents might still be dealing with the effects of the recession.

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