The IFP champions education as a vital and integral component of the socio-economic development of South Africa. From inception the IFP has always championed the cause of education, when others said “liberation now, education later” the IFP countered that myopic outlook with “education for liberation”. Accordingly the IFP congratulates the class of 2018 for the result they have achieved for themselves and the country.
However, it would be remiss to welcome these results wholeheartedly and negate the prevailing realities confronting our education system.
Learners and teachers continue toil against difficult odds ranging from a lack of internet and technological advances in an age of technology on the brink of the 4th industrial revolution, lack of access to electricity and water, no libraries or laboratories and a general norm of dilapidated infrastructure.
Bearing the brutal brunt of this reality continues to be rural provinces who year on year are always at the tail end of the results table; previously disadvantaged schools remain presently disadvantaged. The IFP reiterates its call for the establishment of a Education Redress Fund which will prioritise the holistic development of previously disadvantaged schools.
The learning fields are not even and they have a serious bias towards the haves against the have nots. Educational equality remains equality for only those who have access to modern day resources, with only less than 10% of South African schools having access to IT access. Gauteng with its heavy investment into IT has proven the benefits of IT with its showing in the 2018 results.
In welcoming these results we must condemn the utterances of the Minister of Basic Education who when releasing the results referred to those who failed or did not do well as the “immaterially insignificant”; clearly to the ANC it is acceptable that 22 out of every 100 learners failed. The truth is that it in this failure that the vicious cycle of unemployment, unemployability, inequality and poverty kicks in. But to the ANC this ticking time bomb is of no significance or consequence.
The transferring of Early Childhood Development to Basic Education is a welcome move.
The IFP remains concerned at the limited space available in institutions of higher learning to absorb all those who passed. The consequence of this shortage of space will adversely affect those who come from struggling backgrounds even though their results warrant them access as institutions tend to have a bias to those who come from advantaged circumstances; compounded by a struggling NSFAS system.
The learners who wrote the sign language examination must be congratulated for the good result.
Xolani Ngwezi, MP
IFP Spokesperson on Basic Education
076 975 5555
Mkhuleko Hlengwa, MP
IFP National Spokesperson
071 111 0539