The number of late applications at Gauteng schools have dropped to 4 000, from 15 000 last year.
Education department spokesperson Charles Phahlane attributed the decrease to the fact that registration for 2013 had started early.
“The registration period started two months earlier in 2012.
“Parents could apply between May 22 and July 27 2012. After the closing date, we started assessing school readiness for 2013 in terms of textbooks, stationery, furniture, human resources and the need for extra classes,” he explained.
Last year the province battled with an influx of pupils at late registration centres. Snaking queues could be seen outside the schools that were serving as operation centres, especially those in the northern suburbs of Joburg.
Some of this year’s 4 000 latecomers have been placed in schools. “The others would be placed as more schools avail spaces,” said Phahlane.
He urged parents who are still seeking space for this year to go to their nearest district operation centre for assistance.
“They should not go to the school and apply for space as schools are now dealing with learning and teaching. Districts would know the availability of space in their regions and can advise parents regarding schools that accommodate their children,” he said.
He warned that pupils may not get into the school of their choice, “but we will attempt to find the next best school in terms of proximity to (parents’) place of residence or work”.
Applications for 2014 will also open early this year. Phahlane said more details will be communicated in due course.