Learner placements: Be patient, department urges parents

With the placement of Grade 1 and 8 learners in Gauteng schools well underway, many parents have voiced their concerns regarding the process.

The Gauteng Department of Education on Wednesday said it noted the enquiries from concerned parents and was doing everything necessary to work with speed in ensuring that all learners who applied during the application period are placed on time.

“We call on parents to be patient as our call centre is inundated with a high volume of calls, which gives a false impression that calls ring unanswered,” the department said in a statement issued on Wednesday morning.

Call centre agents spend on average between 15 and 20 minutes on a call. Eighty per cent of the calls received assist with resetting passwords, while 20% assist with pending district processing. On Friday, the call centre received 14 085 calls, on Monday 17 996 and 10 670 yon Tuesday.

Between April 16 and May 28, the department processed 282 823 applicants. Of these, 149 461 are Grade 1 applicants and 133 362 are Grade 8 applicants. The department has to date made 193 587 offers of placement to applicants and as at August 7, 74 421 of the offers were accepted.

However, 119 166 offers of placement must be accepted by August 16, as failure to accept these offers will result in applicants losing their space at the school.

Currently, there are 89 236 applicants with no offers of placement. The status of these applicants will remain PENDING until further processing.

All schools made offers of placement to parents from August 3 for Grade 1 and Grade 8. Qualifying applicants received more than one offer of placement in line with the number of applications submitted.

When an offer is confirmed, all the other remaining offers are de-activated. The de-activated offers will create more spaces on the schools’ waiting lists for further placements to be offered to other parents.

Parents who were rejected at all five schools where they applied and those who have not received an offer of placement, will be placed by districts.

The department appeals to parents to allow the placement process to run its course and assures parents that online applicants for Grade 1 and 8 that were received in April and May, will be placed by the end of October.

With regards to high pressure schools, 322 high pressure schools received 500 and more applications and reached capacity within the first 30 minutes of the online application system going live at 8am on April16.

These schools were full within 30 minutes of application: Alberton High, Boksburg High, Sir John Adamson High, Mondeor High, Pretoria Boys High, Hoërskool President, Parktown Boys, Parktown Girls, Sunward Park and Laerskool Theresa.

Applicants who have lost or forgotten user names and passwords, may call the call centre on 0800 000 789. Alternatively log on to www.gdeadmissions.gov.za.

To reset the username and password:

STEP 1: Click on Login to Reset Password

STEP 2: Click on Forgot Password?

STEP 3: Enter Identity number and click “Recover Account”

STEP 4: Enter Mobile Token sent to cell phone number, re-enter ID number field and create new Password

STEP 5: Enter Username and NEW password to access account

The date for late applications will be announced in due course based on the availability of resources.

Call for inputs on Draft Amendments to Admissions Regulations

On July 30, the Gauteng Department of Education issued Draft Amendments to Regulations Relating to the Admission of Learners to Public Schools. The comment on these Draft Amendments must be submitted to the GDE by August 29 (30 days after publication).

Among others, the published amendments propose that public schools in the province will no longer unfairly discriminate against pupils on the basis of race, language, ethnicity, origin, culture, colour, age, religion, conscience, belief, sexual orientation, HIV status or any other illness.

A learner may not be refused admission because the parent is unable to pay or has not paid school fees or a deposit determined by the school governing body (SGB), does not subscribe to the mission statement and code of conduct of the school, or has refused to enter into a contract in terms of which the parent waives any claim for damages arising out of the education of the learner.

  AUTHOR
Tembisan

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