Mpumalanga Department of Education says it has delivered 70 of the 105 mobile classrooms to schools damaged by storms. Over 20 schools were damaged by storms last year.
But parents at Masihambisane Primary School in Kanyamazane are not confident that school will resume fully on Wednesday. The school is yet to receive mobile classrooms.
Masihambisani Primary School was hit twice by a storm, in 2018 and 2021, which led to massive destruction. In December the Department of Education demolished 7 classrooms and has promised the school 8 mobile classrooms but they’re yet to arrive.
One of the parents, Sinah Mnisi says, “We are expecting more children this year, but look at these classrooms, they won’t be enough. Where will our children learn under a tree? It’s obvious we have to close the school gate and strike because the department is not addressing these issues.”
Another parent, Hlengiwe Nkentshane says, “We are expecting mobile classrooms to be available as soon as possible because the number of learners will increase, so the problem is we are waiting for the mobile classes.”
The department is adamant that 105 mobile classrooms will be delivered before the end of the month.
Head of Mpumalanga Department of Education, Lucy Moyane says R40 million has been allocated to the department to provide mobile classrooms.
“The provincial government has allocated R40 million to the department to provide 105 mobile classrooms to all these schools, we have delivered 70 mobile classrooms, we are still delivering to ensure that by the end of the month they have classrooms.”
The department says they will comply with COVID-19 regulations and assist schools with PPE. But not all schools will return to full capacity, come Wednesday.
“Primary schools learners are back to full capacity, those schools that have space challenges will continue alternating and for the secondary schools will also continue with alternating attendance until we get a directive from the minister.”
And for those schools in town popular and often overcrowded the department says plans have been approved for additional classrooms.
Mpumalanga Department of Education says it’s all systems go: