The Grahamstown High Court in Makhanda in the Eastern Cape has ruled in favour of the Centre for Child Law in the application to interdict the Eastern Cape Department of Education from excluding children without any documentation from public schools.

The Centre for Child Law filed the application after the Superintendent General of Education in the Province sent out a circular that budget, nutrition and post allocation to schools in the Province will be allocated based on the number of children with documents such as IDs, permits and passports.

Handing down judgment Acting Justice Mfenyana said this is inconsistent with the South African Schools Act and the Constitution therefore is invalid.

Mfenyana also instructed the Eastern Cape Education Department to admit all children without documentation to the province’s public schools.

“If a case where a child doesn’t have documentation, the principal of the school must accept alternative proof such as affidavit or sworn statement from the parent,” says Mfenyana.

The Education Department was also interdicted from excluding children from schools in any manner, including illegal foreign children.


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