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HomeNewsEducationPublic schools Are Allowed To Teach Foreign Languages, Says Department Of Education

Public schools Are Allowed To Teach Foreign Languages, Says Department Of Education

The final concern raised by the PA was the application to teach Shona Language at the public school. Kunene deemed this unacceptable and claimed that the SGB chairperson was behind the push for Shona to be taught.

The recent march by the Patriotic Alliance (PA) to Esikhisini Primary School in Pretoria, Atteridgeville, has brought attention to the alleged teaching of Shona Language at the school.

The PA has accused the Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) of collaborating with the School Governing Board (SGB) chairperson, who is of Zimbabwean nationality, to introduce the teaching of Shona at Esikhisini. However, the department denies receiving any formal application for the introduction of Shona from the public school.

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The PA, led by its deputy president Kenny Kunene, contests the prioritization of Zimbabwean pupils over South African pupils.

Speaking to The Citizen, PA spokesperson Steve Motale stated that the party received information from disgruntled Esikhisini teachers regarding plans to introduce Shona Language at the school, as well as other problems within the school.

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Motale also expressed concern about the high number of Zimbabwean pupils, which the Department of Education confirmed to be 20% of the total student population.

In an interview with the SABC, Kunene questioned the validity of the principal’s claim that only 20% of the students are foreign nationals. Despite the principal’s dismissal of the rumoured figure, the PA remains sceptical and plans to further investigate the matter.

However, the Gauteng Department of Education’s spokesperson, Steve Mabona, confirmed that the population percentage stated by the principal is accurate.

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Mabona clarified that all pupils at Esikhisini were admitted in accordance with the rules and regulations set by the GDE. The Gauteng school admission policy states that all pupils, regardless of their nationality or immigration status, have the right to education in the country. Mabona emphasised that no preferential treatment is given to non-South Africans at the expense of South Africans.

The PA also appealed to the SGB for the removal of the Zimbabwean chairperson. Kunene argued that South Africans are capable of being chairpersons of SGBs and that parents should not outsource their intelligence, skills, and capacity to a Zimbabwean. However, Mabona clarified that SGB members are elected by parents, and only those with relevant and valid documents are eligible to be elected.

Kunene further demanded an amendment to the SGB election rule, limiting eligibility to South African national parents. He expressed his embarrassment as a South African to have a Zimbabwean as the chairperson of an SGB in a South African public school.

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The final concern raised by the PA was the application to teach Shona Language at the public school. Kunene deemed this unacceptable and claimed that the SGB chairperson was behind the push for Shona to be taught.

The principal of the school denied applying to the department for the teaching of Shona. However, according to the department, school principals are allowed to apply for the teaching of foreign languages at their respective schools.

A formal application must be submitted, accompanied by minutes of both parents and SGB meetings, wherein a resolution was taken to introduce the subject. The department also considers factors such as the number of learners interested in the subject, the availability of educators, and the availability of Learning and Teaching Support Material.

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Parusha Naidoo for SurgeZirc SA
Parusha Naidoo for SurgeZirc SA
Parusha Naidoo is a skilled journalist who writes local and world news for SurgeZirc South Africa. With a passion for delivering accurate and reliable information, Parusha has become a trusted voice in the news industry. With years of experience in the field, Parusha has developed a keen eye for identifying important stories and presenting them in a clear and concise manner.
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