Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga has called on all parents of learners to participate in the 2012 School Governing Body (SGB) elections at their children’s schools.
The elections – to be held during March – will see parents, teachers and learners in over 24 000 public schools electing new representatives of the SGBs across the country, who will continue the work of promoting school excellence.
Addressing the media on Monday, Motshekga said the new SGBs would have to pay more attention to improving the quality of learning and teaching, have an interest in the results of tests like the Annual National Assessments (ANA) and the interventions to improve the schools’ pass rate.
“We need SGBs that will support curriculum delivery, focus on the improvement of learner achievement by supporting schools in developing strategies for improving teaching and learning.
“What we also need now is for parents, through SGBs, to understand how and why their children perform at a particular level both in the Grade 12 NSC exams and the ANA,” Motshekga said.
She said attention should be paid also to the supply of textbooks, desks and maintenance of infrastructure and the safety of learners and educators.
People who may serve on SGBs include parents, educators, non-teaching staff, learners at Grade 8 and higher and community members. The term of office is one year for learners and no more than three years for all other members. In addition, school principals are automatic members of the SGB.
In preparing for the elections, the department has developed materials like National Guidelines for School Governing Body Elections, Training Manual for Electoral Officers and the SGB pamphlet.
The national guidelines were developed to bring about uniformity in the system across all provinces on the election process and procedures.
“All our circuit managers will be provided with training manuals to assist them to prepare School Electoral Officers adequately and uniformly. The training manual for electoral officers takes the trainers step by step on how the elections must be conducted,” said Motshekga.
Pamphlets will be distributed from government offices, community centres and health centres informing communities more about SGBs.
The Independent Electoral Commission is to be part of the monitoring process in all provinces during the elections and will assist in generating the report on the election process.
Chairperson of the South African National Association for Special Education, Pieter Smal, urged parents to attend the schools’ Annual General Meetings and participate in the elections.
“Parents are less enthusiastic and think that the running of the school is the school’s responsibility. We have to mobilise parents to take responsibility on the outcome of their children’s education,” said Smal. – BuaNews
Report provided by Gabi Khumalo of BuaNews