“This Amendment Bill takes us back to a model where the state controls everything. It goes against the spirit of the South African Schools’ Act, which provides for public schools and not state schools,” said Dr Jaco Deacon, deputy CEO of FEDSAS.
Deacon says people have until November 10 to comment on the Amendment Bill. FEDSAS encourages all education role-players to comment.
Deacon says it is of paramount importance that parents are involved in formal school governance structures. “If governing bodies do not function properly or if parents and other education role-players are not involved in these structures it strengthens the claim made with this Bill.”
The Basic Education Laws Amendment Bill proposes, among others, that governing bodies play no role in the appointment of school-level heads of department, deputy principals and principals. Currently a school’s governing body makes a recommendation about these appointments.
“If the serious shortcomings in the proposed Bill are not pointed out and changed we will spend millions on reactive court cases and other actions. Now we have the opportunity to be proactive. However, this can only happen if all education role-players commit, comment and create awareness about the implications,” concluded Deacon.