Pupils with Special Needs
The DA notes Gauteng Education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi’s, announcement that his department will be building eighteen new schools for pupils with special needs in the province.
This is a welcome move; however, construction of these facilities is not sufficient to ensure that quality outcomes are achieved for these learners.
Oversight visits to a number of special needs schools by the Education Portfolio Committee have revealed a number of shortcomings in this arena. Many of these schools have infrastructure deficits, including dilapidated buildings in which to teach and no facilities for private counselling.
Support from District Officials
In addition, the skills levels of educators in special needs schools are questionable as they often do not have the expertise necessary for these environments.
A number of special needs schools have also raised concerns that they are not able to get support from district officials, as many do not have the requisite skills themselves to support the educators. Unfortunately, the lack of support provided by district offices is not unique to special needs schools and remains a critical structure which needs to be addressed.
The DA will be working closely with both the Education Department and Portfolio Committee to ensure that learners attending both new and existing special needs schools are given the quality education they deserve.
Further, that educators and district officials have the requisite skills and drive to set standards of excellence for these and all learners of Gauteng.
Alan Fuchs MPL
DA Gauteng Spokesperson: Education
060 558 8313