High schools to compete in provincial road safety education competitions
The Department of Transport and Public Works will be hosting the annual provincial Participatory Educational Techniques (PET) and Road Safety Debate competitions at the Gene Louw Traffic College on 30 July 2016.
For the last six years, these projects have been promoting road safety awareness among young people in the Western Cape, using an innovative participatory education approach.
The PET competition invites Grade 10 and 11 learners to identify road safety hazards in their communities and to develop research-based solutions. This provides them with a hands-on opportunity to solve their own community’s road safety problems. The Steenberg High School (Urban Category) and Worcester’s Breede River High School (Rural Category) will compete in this year’s event and will represent the Western Cape at the nationals in KwaZulu-Natal from 3 to 8 October 2016. Teams from both schools have identified road safety problems affecting their schools or communities, and have formulated solutions to each problem using the three Es: education, engineering and enforcement. They have prepared verbal and written presentations, backed up by a traffic model display.
The debate competition addresses the underlying issues of road safety in society at large, and gives young people the opportunity to discuss pertinent issues affecting road safety behaviour and attitudes. The method used is a participatory education approach, specifically targeted at high school learners and is conducted in line with the World Style of Debating. Because children and youth comprise a major group at risk, the road safety debate is targeted at high school youth, and who are included in the road user category as, pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, novice drivers and passengers.
Teams of five learners from Hugenote High School (Wellington), New Orleans Secondary School (Paarl), Kayamandi Secondary School (Stellenbosch), Makupula Secondary School (Stellenbosch) and Diazville High School (Saldanha) will compete for top honours in this year’s event. The five best debaters will go on to represent the province at the nationals.
Some of the competition topics:
- Should the results of the breathalyser be sufficient evidence for a conviction in court?
- Will the development of public transport system reduce road traffic fatalities?
- Are gruesome pictures and adverts of crash victims more effective in discouraging reckless driving than road safety education?
- Are young novice drivers the main cause of road traffic crashes?
Donald Grant, Minister of Transport and Public Works says the Department remains committed to working with the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) and other key provincial road safety role players to run ongoing road safety education and awareness activities in schools, and to ensure that we continue to produce young road safety ambassadors for years to come.
“We are confident that these projects create opportunities for learners to improve road safety in their communities,” he said.