School Safety Is Premier’s Priority – Makhura at SOPA 2019

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Gauteng Premier David Makhura State of the Province Address 2018

Gauteng Premier David Makhura has ordered Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi to produce annual primary school results, adding that school safety is a priority for his office.

Speaking at his State of the Province Address (SoPA) Monday, Makhura said Lesufi has been instructed to implement the national integrated assessment framework, which will ensure rigorous assessment of all primary schools.

“The results of this assessment will be publicly released as we do with Grade 12 results. This groundbreaking initiative will promote accountability and transparency on performance across the entire system and will empower parents to make better decisions regarding the education of their children, the Gauteng Premier said.

“In the first 100 Days, Lesufi will present a plan to the executive council on the status of all primary schools as well as the improvement plans to turn around poorly performing primary schools,” he added.

Last year, Gauteng achieved a pass rate of 87.92%. Eight of the 10 best-performing districts are also in the province.

“I want more attention to be directed at strengthening and improving the performance of primary education in Gauteng.”

He added that Lesufi must outline, within 100 days, interventions which will focus on turning around the poorest performing primary schools through systematic support to ensure that “we also drastically reduce the number of children who are lost through the system between Grade R and Grade 12.”

School safety will also be a key priority for the provincial government. Makhura directed Safety MEC Faith Mazibuko to deploy 10 patrollers in every ward to secure schools from criminal elements.

He added that his government, with private sector partners, will increase the number of Schools of Specialisation from 17 to 35.

“We will continue to build new schools for learners with special educational needs at a rate higher than ever before to ensure that no learner or child is left behind or left out,” Makhura said.

“Gauteng should be a hub of fourth industrial revolution skills and a centre of excellence for digital economy breakthroughs.”

He said in preparing for the fourth industrial revolution and the digital age, Gauteng is investing in wall-to-wall broadband coverage, with an emphasis on deprived communities.

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“Investing in internet connectivity will increase our GDP by 1.5%, improve service delivery to citizens, create new industries and provide new platforms for small businesses to integrate with the mainstream economy,” Makhura said.

There are plans to expand the infrastructure and the offerings of the Gauteng Innovation Hub in “order to revive the of growing it into Africa’s Silicon Valley that will drive the development of our digital economy.”

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