Child Support Grants Cannot be Obtained at the Expense of a Child's Education
Media Statement by Albert Fritz, Minister of Social Development
The recent media reports about children missing school so that they can be presented to SASSA officials when their parents/guardians re-register them for child support grants is cause for grave concern.
I have today spoken with the regional head for SASSA in the Western Cape to appeal for alternative arrangements in this regard.
I have suggested that they extend their operating hours purely for this project so that parents can present their children either after school or on weekends. With less than three months to go for the school year, these children need all the time they can get in the classroom.
We had a constructive engagement in which I was assured that they will not be continuing in this manner, and will rather be engaging directly with the education department for confirmation of the children's attendance at school.
I have for a long time been advocating for this type of conditionality where the receipt of a child support grant has to be conditional upon children attending school. Parents must take responsibility and be held accountable when their children are not in school.
We recognise the need for this source of income in many poor households across the country. However, it must never be obtained at the expense of a child's education. Their education is their one chance out of a life of poverty and dependence on grants.
Cell: 083 280 9199