Minister Debbie Schäfer
Western Cape Minister of Education
The final round of applications to enrol children in school for 2015 is now closed.
Thousands of parents have enrolled their children in schools already, and we thank them for their co-operation.
I am therefore making a final appeal to parents to register their children immediately by contacting their nearest district office for assistance. It is extremely important for parents to enquire about enrolling their child within the next week.
In terms of Section 3(1) of the South African Schools Act (Act 84 of 1994), school attendance is compulsory for all learners from the first school day of the year in which the learner reaches the age of seven years until the last school day of the year in which such learner reaches the age of fifteen years or the ninth grade, whichever occurs first.
In terms of Section 3(6) of the South African Schools Act (Act 84 of 1994), any parent who, without just cause and after a written notice from the Head of Department, fails to comply with subsection (1), is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months.
It is therefore the responsibility of parents and guardians to enrol children for the following school year if they are entering Grade 1, changing schools (such as entering Grade 8 or 9) or when they have moved to a new geographical area. Many schools, however, have already reached capacity.
Enrolment in schools began in March this year, with a second phase of enrolments from July to September. The WCED also launched an early enrolment campaign earlier in the year, and has issued numerous calls for enrolment.
Earlier this year, the WCED developed a new online system, School Admission Management Information System (SAMI) which simplifies management of learner enrolment.
The system automatically sends an e-mail to the district officials to assist with finding a space for any learner who remains unplaced.
The system however, cannot create an entry for a child unless an application for enrolment for 2015 has been received.
The school population in the Western Cape is growing rapidly year-by-year. It’s important that children are enrolled for school as soon as possible so that we can plan ahead for 2015.
Parents should note that many schools have already concluded their admissions processes. Those parents who have yet to enrol their children have therefore reduced their chances of enrolling at a school of their choice.
Parents who have applied to schools and have not secured a space at any school may contact our district offices for assistance. Districts will assist parents using the available information on SAMI in identifying spaces available at the nearest schools, according to the parents’ request in terms of grade or medium of instruction.
We ask that parents work together with the WCED so that we can manage this process as efficiently as possible to ensure a smooth start to 2015. Please contact your Education District Office immediately to ensure that we place your child in time for the 2015 school year.