Pietermaritzburg’s own, ‘Blade’ is honoured

2010-03-22 00:00

TEN months after Pietermaritzburg’s Dr Blade Nzimande’s appointment as Minister of Higher Education and Training, 21 principals from different schools in the Edendale area congratulated him yesterday.

The principals who visited him in KwaDambuza are part of the Edendale Principal’s Forum, where they share information and resources.

Addressing them at his home, Nzimande said: “I am humbled by this gesture as although it might look minor, it is a huge thing for me because these are school principals who are teaching thousands of poor kids. It gives me confidence that there are people who care and in that way I know that I have a good support structure”.

He said that despite Edendale being one of the poorest areas with a big concentration, he appreciates the efforts of the teachers who work under very difficult conditions. He further said that being the Minister of Higher Education does not make him uninterested in what is happening at schools, althought there are two ministers dealing with education, there is one education system.

“The foundation phase should be a critical point in the pupil’s education. After Grade 9, there is a huge drop out rate and we cannot treat those students as outcasts because they have not completed matric. As a result we have skills development programmes in higher learning institutions”. Nzimande promised to pass on the problems faced by principals to the national Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga.

He said with education being a priority, a creche with an excellent Grade R facility and a library will soon be officially opened next to his home following funding of the project by the Dambuza Community Trust (Damcom). project.

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