James Masango MPL
Provincial Chief Whip of the Official Opposition
Mpumalanga’s disastrous education crisis can only be addressed if the education department embarks on a sustained teacher capacitation programme. Such an investment will improve both learner and teacher performance and lay the foundation for a brighter future.
During a recent portfolio committee meeting, the department revealed that 37% of its teachers are still underqualified, and stated its intention to upgrade the qualifications of 12 127 teachers to REQV 14 (Relative Education Qualification Value), equal to a matric and a four-year diploma.
A report by the National Education and Evaluation Unit (NEEDU) entitled “The State of Literacy Teaching and Learning in the Foundation Phase”, found that the primary reason for education failure is that many teachers can’t teach – a factor which has had its impact on education in Mpumalanga.
The DA-led Western Cape education department recognised that quality education lays the foundation for future employment prospects, and invested heavily in improving the quality of the learning and teaching environment, as well as to hold teachers accountable. This plan is at the core of the DA’s national strategy to improve education, which can be viewed by clicking here.
Mpumalanga must adopt this practice, as our learners have the right to quality education, and being taught by qualified professionals will place them at the greatest advantage. To this end, the will submit formal written questions to education MEC Reginah Mhaule asking her to provide us with timeframes and targets for the proposed teacher capacitation programme, as we believe that it should be completed in the shortest possible time
With billions of rands invested annually in education in Mpumalanga, it is inexcusable for the department not to invest in the future prospects of our learners.