Parents demand admissions for their kids

2019-02-12 06:01
Some of the learners during the protest.

Some of the learners during the protest.

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A group of parents and children picketed outside Pinelands High School (PHS) last week demanding a fair and transparent process for admissions.

This after some learners from neighbouring communities were not admitted to the school for the current academic year.

Picketing parents say they found it strange because they had been kept in the loop for a long time with no clear indication of the outcome of their applications, when they later found out they had not been accepted.

After numerous attempts to find out the reasons, convincing the school to decide otherwise and logging appeals with the Western Cape Education Department (WCED), they turned to streets to show their anger.

One of the children who was not admitted to the school is from the Lucas family.

The child is still at home and her mother, Tania Lucas, said her child is still hopeful that the matter will be resolved and she will be able to attend.

“Our daughter was so set on going to this school and even after they declined us, she convinced us,” said Lucas.

“She is obviously extremely sad that she’s missed the first day of high school. She misses being with friends even though some keep in touch all the time. We have been fairly open with her about this all. And she’s quite adamant that even though Pinelands High has rejected her they are still on top of her list of schools to go to.”

Lucas said they want clarity and fairness, not the run-around she says they were given when following up with the school. “The education department at first said we should put her in at JG Meiring, but we refused as it’s not a choice of school we want for her. They then tried for us to go to Oude Molen which is a technical school. Our daughter is not a technical student at all. She does ballet six days a week, for goodness’ sake. We applied for the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA), which was meant to take 30 days for the department to provide; it’s over 30 days and we are still waiting. All we want to know is what their selection criteria is because they told us our application and appeal was denied based on the fact that the school is oversubscribed and that it’s not our closest school.”

Jessica Shelver, spokesperson for the WCED, confirmed that the MEC, Debbie Schäfer had received an appeal for the learner. “The WCED had offered the learner a place at Oude Moulen High School, also in Pinelands. It is now up to the parents to ensure that their daughter is enrolled there,” she said.

She advised parents to start applying for admissions for 2020 and application are open from Friday 15 February to Friday 15 March.


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