A Sad Day for Education
The Western Cape Government takes note of the split judgment handed down by the Western Cape High Court this morning on the closure of 17 schools in this Province.
This is a sad day for education. The judgment has compromised the education opportunities for the learners at the 17 schools.
The WCED will, however, continue to support these schools.
The bench was divided on its response to the approach to the courts with the Minority judgment supporting the closure of all but one of the schools.
My final decision to close these schools, in October last year, was made in the best interests of the learners concerned and I believe that the court’s decision will ultimately result in a loss of better education opportunities for these learners – opportunities such as those now being enjoyed by learners from Tonko Bosman Primary School since the beginning of the year.
Tonko Bosman Primary, for example, was one of the three schools that closed last year, mainly because of low numbers, multi-grade teaching and better education opportunities elsewhere.
The learners now attend Raithby Primary School, where they now receive single-grade tuition and improved education facilities such as a computer lab and sports and extra-curricular playing fields.
These learners lives have ultimately improved based on the decisions this Government has made.
Nevertheless, we accept the finding of the court. We will study the judgment carefully and will take into consideration the recommendations made by the court in terms of procedures followed with respect to school closures.
We will also continue to explore all opportunities that will improve the education opportunities of all our learners in this Province.