Sod-turning ceremony of new R62 million Bonnievale Primary School
Speech by Donald Grant, Minister of Transport and Public Works
- Programme Director, Mr Heinrich Robertson
- Executive Mayor of Langeberg Municipality, Alderman Daniela Gagiano
- Senior officials of the Department of Transport and Public Works
- Senior officials of the Western Cape Education Department
- Senior officials of the Langeberg Municipality
- Members of the SGB
- Invited guests
Good day, goeiedag, molweni
Thank you for the kind invitation to be with you on this important occasion, the official sod-turning ceremony of the new R62 million Bonnievale Primary School.
This education infrastructure project is set to become a landmark that will transform young lives for many years to come in your community. Not too long ago, I was still the provincial Minister of Education. Events such as this one have always been an overwhelming experience, and something which has remained close to my heart. Thousands of learners from this area are expected to learn under improved conditions once the rebuilding of their primary school is complete.
The Western Cape Government invests heavily in infrastructure to improve the quality of our teaching and learning spaces, as well as to meet the demands for schooling in the province. The Western Cape Education Department (WCED) has budgeted a total of R1.29 billion in 2016/17 for building and refurbishing school infrastructure across the province.
This project was commissioned by the Department of Transport and Public Works for the WCED to replace the existing school. Construction started last month, and is expected to have been completed in October 2017. The learners of the school have been temporarily accommodated in mobile structures nearby, and together with teaching staff, must be excited to move back into a new school next year.
The project will be implemented in two phases. In Phase 1, a temporary school was erected on land belonging to the Langeberg Municipality. In Phase 2, the old school building will be demolished, and the new school building will be taken into service.
Most of the school buildings will comprise a framed concrete structure and a mixture of face brick and painted infill walls. The classroom blocks and administration building are double storey single-bank sections with covered open passages with concrete framed masonry.
Teaching facilities will comprise 32 standard classrooms (40 learners per classrooms), four Grade R classrooms (30 learners per classroom) and three multi-purpose classrooms to be used for library and computer services, arts and culture, and handwork. The complex will also have a hall with toilet facilities, an administrative building and facilities for a supervisor.
All classrooms will enjoy a lot of natural light and be well ventilated. The site will be landscaped with a combination of grass and perennial flowering plants, including planters in the courtyard.
Ladies and gentlemen,
My Department is committed to creating Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) work opportunities through the project, including the vital skills training component. The Department is constantly looking for ways to assist emerging contractors to benefit from government infrastructure projects and, at the same time, to meet its empowerment targets.
A total of R10 million is expected to go towards targeted contractor businesses, R4 million to suppliers and manufacturers, and R5 million to targeted local labour. The primary target area for local labour will be Bonnievale and Happy Valley. The appointed Community Liaison Officer will assist with the recruitment of local labour. The project also makes provision for life skills training and technical skills training for local persons from the Langeberg Municipal area.
We are confident that this new school will be transformed into an institution of teaching and learning where learners, educators and parents feel safe and secure, and where quality learning can take place. This is in line with the Western Cape Government’s Provincial Strategic Goal 2, to improve education outcomes and opportunities for youth development.
Thank you, dankie, enkosi.