The Western Cape Education department has taken the decision to close all schools in the province tomorrow ahead of an intense storm system predicted to make landfall in Cape Town later today.
"After extensive consultation with all role players and at the recommendation of the provincial disaster risk management and SA Weather Service, I have taken the unprecedented decision in the interest of learner and educator safety to close schools in the Western Cape tomorrow, 7 June," read a statement issued by head of department Brian Schreuder.
The statement adds that all learner transport will also be suspended on Wednesday.
The South African Weather Service has warned that that the Western Cape will experience gale force winds of up to 90km/h and heavy rains in excess of 50mm in certain areas of the province while very high seas are expected with swells reaching up to 12m.
"Our primary concern is the safety of learners and staff. The storm may damage some schools, which could place learners and staff at risk, as well as those who commute to school, especially in rural areas. We have been advised that the storm will abate by Thursday (8 June). Schools must therefore reopen on Thursday.
"We are cognisant that this decision will disrupt school programmes tomorrow, but we will be working with schools to ensure that the programme returns to normal and we request their understanding and cooperation in the circumstances," adds Schreuder.
Principals can report any storm damage to schools to the Safe Schools Call Centre at 0800 45 46 47.