Reading skills report a 'reality check' - ANC education study group

2017-12-07 17:32
(Gallo images/Getty images)

(Gallo images/Getty images)

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Johannesburg – The ANC’s study group on basic education said a recent report, which exposed low reading skill levels among Grade 4 pupils, was "a reality check".

The recent Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) report found that very low levels of primary school pupils were able to read in their mother tongues.

"This comes as a reality check and emphasises the need to re-evaluate the way [pupils] are taught in and out of the classroom," said Nomalungelo Gina, the chairperson of the study group.

"It also emphasises the need to enhance the quality of teachers [those] who teach our [pupils]," she said.

READ: Teachers, parents at the heart of the solution to SA children's reading problem - expert

The study group urged the minister and deputy minister of basic education to consider more enhanced ways to appoint qualified and quality teachers.

"We do, however, also need to acknowledge the daily social challenges teachers are faced with in our schools. Teachers have to deal with child-headed households, high levels of poverty that, in turn, lead to violence, as well as drug and alcohol abuse in these communities," Gina said.

Teachers have also had to deal with some female pupils, who became mothers at a young age.

Gina added that it was crucial that society play a role in improving these statistics, along with government, civil society and the public sector.

"We must take full responsibility of the current state of our education system and implement better ways of teaching and ensuring that [pupils] read comprehensively from the foundation phase. It is at this stage that we are to build a solid foundation for [pupils]."

Gina said the ANC congratulated all the pupils who successfully completed the year.

"[We] encourage those who had unsuccessful outcomes to not despair," she added.

Read more on:    education

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