DA calls on MEC to assist overcrowded Daveyton school

Michele Clarke MPL

DA Constituency head – Benoni.

The DA calls on Gauteng education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi to improve conditions for staff and learners at the Albert Luthuli primary school in Daveyton, which despite being overcrowded and under-resourced, are committed to quality learning and teaching.

During an oversight visit to the school, the DA was alarmed at the rate of the school’s deterioration. Opened in 2013 for the Albert Luthuli community of Daveyton for pupils from Grade R to Grade 7, overcrowding has become so severe that grade 6 and 7 learners were placed in the nearby high school.

Currently the school has 1900 learners enrolled, twice the amount it was designed for, and the Education Department’s supply of temporary classes has not been able to reduce overcrowded classrooms.

Furthermore, infrastructure at the school is not conducive to a healthy learning environment. The only playground is the soccer field, which has to accommodate 1900 learners during break time. The swimming pool is not being used as a sporting facility as it has  become a safety risk.

Last year the department supplied learners with tablets, but without 3G cards or any sort of broadband or Wi-Fi connectivity. In fact, the school has no telephone.

MEC Lesufi and the Education Department must realise that one under-resourced primary and one high school is simply insufficient for a community of more than 6000 households.

With a reduction of overcrowded classrooms, learner and teacher morale will improve, increasing the outcome of quality education and giving young people from this impoverished community increased opportunity to build a better life.

School infrastructure must be matched with the needs of the community, and elaborate ribbon cutting public relations exercises must be followed up by progress monitoring and needs assessments.

To this end the DA will submit questions to the MEC asking what plans are in place to increase schools in this community, when the school will receive telephone lines and Wi-Fi and what measures will be taken to improve conditions at the school.

The DA will continue to with our efforts to give every child in every community the opportunity of building a better life.