Education dept. fail to fund midyear exams

Jacques Smalle (MPL)

DA Limpopo Provincial Leader

Schools across Limpopo are struggling with their midyear exams because the Education Department has not sent them norm and standards funding required by law.

The telephonic survey conducted by the DA with school principals, can confirm that many schools don’t have money to administer the exams.

The department is giving all schools only one exam papers and advise them to make more copies for the learners.

This is a burden to many schools that did not get their norms and standard funding.

Some schools attended by the poorest learners in rural areas have resorted taking loans from various banks to run the exams which is unacceptable.

In some schools that do not have photo copy machines, they write exams questions on the chalkboard.

This basic funding, known as Norms and Standards funds, is paid to schools to cover electricity and water bills, photocopying, phone calls, school maintenance and other everyday demands of running a school.

In Limpopo, these funds are meant to be paid quarterly to schools, but most schools surveyed have received very little funds since January 2014.

Many learners are still without textbooks for subjects such as maths and science and many schools utilised the money to make copies for the textbooks.

77% of all learners are taught at the poor schools (Quintiles 1 -3).

When there is a funding crisis in poor schools, its impact is felt across poor communities province-wide.

The DA urges MEC for Education , Thembisile Nwedamutswu to pay all the schools their funding before the end of this week in ensuring that the exams run smoothly without any hiccups like last year.