What parents can expect from the proposed Basic Education Laws Amendment Bill

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Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, will be meeting with school unions and stakeholders to discuss the Basic Education Laws Amendment (BELA) Bill draft, that has been approved by the cabinet, before proposing it to Parliament.
Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, will be meeting with school unions and stakeholders to discuss the Basic Education Laws Amendment (BELA) Bill draft, that has been approved by the cabinet, before proposing it to Parliament.

Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga, will be meeting with school unions and stakeholders to discuss the Basic Education Laws Amendment (BELA) Bill draft, that has been approved by the cabinet, before proposing it to Parliament.

The bill under consideration will make amendments to the South African Schools act of 1996 and the Employment of Educators Act of 1998.

These changes include:

  • The possibility of a prison sentence in cases where the parents of a learner, or any other person, prevents the learner who is subject to compulsory school attendance from attending school;
  • It will influence teacher appointments;
  • Subjugation and search of learners;
  • Terms and criteria for School Governing Body (SGB) members will change;
  • The head of department will have the final authority to admit learners to a public school;
  • Schools will be expected to draft and submit a language policy for approval;
  • New admissions guidelines;
  • Possible prison sentence for not registering home-schooled children with the Department of Education and strictly teaching the requirements around what curriculum they may be taught.

All provincial education departments were informed of the draft Bill, as well as Heads of Education Departments Committee and the Council of Education Ministers.

They approved the draft Bill for publication in the Government Gazette for public commentary.

Numerous organisations were briefed like school governing body associations and unions, on the content of the draft Bill.

Some organisations and the provincial education departments provided the Department with written commentary, and the Cabinet has granted approval for the draft Bill to be published for public comments.


See draft bill here: Basic Education Laws Amendment (BELA) Bill draft


For any enquiries, contact Adv. TD Rudman at tel. 012 357 3856 or rudman.d@dbe.gov.za.

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