Today marks the big return of children to classrooms, even for those that have not attended classes since March. This includes children in grades R, 1, 2, 3, 6, 9, 10, and 11.
This back-to-school intake excludes pupils in grades 5 and 8.
So, when are they expected to be back in the classroom?
KZN education MEC Kwazi Mshengu briefed the media last week Thursday and communicated that all grades would be back by the end of this week.
“Tomorrow and Tuesday we are expecting Grade R, Grade 1, Grade 6, Grade 10 and Grade 11. Then on Wednesday and Thursday, we are expecting Grade 2, Grade 5, Grade 8 and Grade 9. And on Friday we are expecting Grade 3, Grade 4, Grade 10 and Grade 11.”
Therefore, this week would see the return of children from grade R to 11. Matrics and Grade 7s have already returned to school.
Responding to a tweet raised by a parent regarding Mshengu’s statement that Grades 8 and 5s will be back on the 27 and 28 August, department of basic education’s spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga said “each school would have its own rotation schedule. It’s important to communicate with the school on what they have decided to do”.
This would mean that not all schools will see the return of students at the same time.
The department’s gazetted dates indicate that children in Grades 5 and 8 will be back on 31 August.
Furthermore, Deputy Minister for the Department of Basic Education Dr Reginah Mhaule previously tweeted: “If a school has the capacity to manage all grades at once, they can do so, especially small and multi-grade schools.”
In essence, all grades should be back by the end of August, but the timeline of that would be the school’s responsibility.
So, parents should remain in close communication with the school to learn more regarding when their children would be required back in school.