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Cape Town - Western Cape Education MEC Donald Grant says his department will be able to accommodate 138 children from Zwelitsha in Khayelitsha who are yet to find a school placement, but some parents are not sold on the offer.
Grant said the department was informed last week of about 400 children in the area who had not been placed in schools, but later determined that there were only 138.
Last week, when officials visited the area they were locked inside a school building by residents demanding a new mobile school be built.
A meeting between officials, principals in Khayelitsha and the Khayelitsha development forum was held on Wednesday; Grant said it was determined there were 686 places available in primary schools and 120 in secondary schools.
“There are two schools each with three additional classrooms that can also be utilised if needed. With this information we are confident that we will be able to accommodate the 138 learners at a school.”
He said the onus was now on parents to enrol their children. A registration hub has been arranged.
“Should a parent continue to refuse to enrol their child, they will be in clear violation of the law.”
He said a new school would be built in the area in Zwelitsha over the 2013/14 and 2015/16 period.
ANC councillor Andile Lili, who said his own child had not found a place, said parents were planning to take the matter to court.
He said they wanted a mobile school.
He claimed there were 500 children, not 138, without a school.
“We can’t allow the children to be placed in overcrowded schools. An African child here in Cape Town is treated as a refugee.”
Nosbulelo Ngesi, mother of Grade 2 pupil Nangamso Ngesi, said: “I cannot afford the transport to send my child to the schools that are far from my home. The only income I have is a grant.”
She was concerned about the distance kids would have to travel to schools.
Luleka Ngqeshemba has three children.
She said she could not afford to pay for transport to schools outside her area as she was unemployed.
She said did not want to send her children to other schools because of the gang violence in those areas.