COSAT: Expanding Access to Quality Education
This morning, Western Cape Education Minister, Donald Grant, attended the official opening ceremony of the new Centre of Science and Technology (COSAT) school in Khayelitsha.
COSAT is one of three STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) facilities in the Western Cape. The other two existing facilities are the Cape Academy in Tokai and the new Claremont High School.
The school had previously been situated on the False Bay College premises, co-sharing the site with False Bay FET College. The final decision to relocate the school to a new facility was taken in 2009, after a visit by Minister Donald Grant to the school, and a new school building was planned as part of the Western Cape Education Department's (WCED) new infrastructure programme.
Grant said that the decision to relocate the school had been taken for a number of reasons. "However, first and foremost, was the need to expand access to quality education. COSAT is one of this province's best performing schools, and in order to expand access and create further opportunities for the young learners of Khayelitsha, a bigger school was therefore required."
"Now, for the first time in 2011, COSAT has enrolled Grade 8 learners at the school, with learner numbers at the school expected to rise to 500 by 2014. Therefore, with the relocation and the building of the new school, 300 additional learners will now have access to quality education. This is particularly significant because of the school's emphasis on maths, science and technology."
"Subjects such as maths, science and technology give our learners the necessary skills for entering higher education studies, and for various career options in business, economics, accountancy and medicine. This is key to the economic development and progress of any country."
After a tour of the school building, Grant said he was delighted with the new and improved educational facilities which now include a new media centre, four computer labs, a mathematics subject room, two physical science labs, two chemistry labs and a technology room. The cost of the new school is R26 million. Building began in August 2010 and was completed in April 2011.
Enrolment at the school increased from 194 in 2010 to 278 in 2011 and will reach 500 by 2014. There are 70 matriculants this year. "I wish the learners and educators of this school every success and I am 100% confident that they will continue to do us proud."
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