In other cases we see provinces like the Eastern Cape where school kids still get their lessons under the trees or are in classes where there are no windows - you can just imagine how they coped this past winter. Some have to clean the classrooms before school starts because the doors do not close and animals come in during the night for shelter and make a mess. Many black parents have taken their children to former model C schools or private schools in search of a better education.
'Model C was good enough for me'
I spoke to a mother who says that her child will stay in a township school and feels no pressure to send him to a school in the suburbs. Zandile says that she went to a school in a township and she turned out fine and does not see what the fuss is all about. She does get surprised looks from friends when she mentions to them that her son is in a township school but will not succumb to the pressure and many have pressurised her but she will not budge.
She feels that parents need to look at the support they are giving the kids and not only look at the school to do everything for the children. Zandile says that there needs to be a relationship between the mother, teacher and child. She also does not want her son to lose his home language, Xhosa. She feels that her son will be in touch with his roots unlike her friends' kids who have become too Westernised.
She strongly feels that her child is getting the best education. She knows what she can afford and the suburbs is not it.
'No model C school for my child!'
On the other side of the argument is Thobeka. She says that not in her lifetime will her kids attend a township school. She wants the best for her two kids. She also attended a model C school and will not give her kids anything less that what she got. She is happy with the level of education her kids are getting and says that they are advanced and they can also speak English very well and are being exposed to more than they would have in a township school. Even though she lives in the township, she is happy to pay extra and work twice as hard so that she can afford a better education for them.
I know of schools in the townships that have produced the best students that can compete with those in the suburbs, all is not bleak. Some of the top matriculants in this country went to township schools and they excelled. Maybe Zandile is right, this all depends on the level of commitment between the parties involved – parents, school and child.
Read more by Masanda Peter
Where would you choose to send your child to school?
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