Despite a slow start, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says the school online application  system has received over 200 000 applications in just over an hour, surpassing that of last year by more than double.

The system officially went live at 8 o’clock on Monday morning.

While technical glitches were experienced minutes after the system went live, parents wanting their children to start Grades 1 and 8 in Gauteng schools for 2020 say that the process was smooth and fast.

The Department of Education has admitted that there were issues in the system with some parents reporting difficulties logging onto the system.

Overseeing department officials assisting parents to apply for their children, Lesufi says because of the new changes to the system and adding in maps to accommodate the kilometre radius option, the system is experiencing some challenges.

“So far so good. We are breaking records. There are still minor glitches there and there because of the feeder zone system because of the heaviness of the maps. There might be delays there and there or it might log out people there and there, but those parents that are still struggling or have limitations I’ll ask them and plead with them to continue trying until they get everything that they want.”

The department has previously warned parents to apply on time – a call heeded by many.

Parents, who have already applied, have seven working days to submit all required documents to all the schools they applied to.

The application period will close at midnight on 22 July 2020.

FEDSAS supports the online registration system

The Federation of Governing Bodies of South African Schools (FEDSAS) says they fully support Gauteng’s 2020 online registration system for Grades 1 and 8 learners.

The online registration system was abruptly halted last week, due to disputes that resulted in a postponement.

Lesufi says all grievances were resolved, after consulting with the organisations including AfriForum and FEDSAS.

FEDSAS CEO Paul Colditz says they are happy with the changes made to the system.

“Our problem was that the system did not speak to or align with determination for the feeder zones for schools and the Gauteng admission regulation which was published on the 18 of March. So they listened to us. They contacted the programmers to correct the system; and the system was corrected so that if you now apply, you given all schools within the 30 km radius and we’re quite happy that all our issues have been resolved.”