Home > United Nations Online Network in Public Administration and Finance (UNPAN)
1. Global
Global
2. Africa
Africa
3. Arab States
Arab States
4. Asia & Pacific
Asia & Pacific
5. Europe
Europe
6. Latin America & Caribbean
Latin America & Caribbean
7. North America
North America
UNPAN Africa
Public Administration News  
Share
South Africa: Early Childhood Education: No Grade R Obligation
Source: Published in: Legalbrief
Source Date: Friday, October 25, 2013
Country: South Africa
Created: Oct 25, 2013

Nevertheless, reference is made to an 'action plan' apparently setting out targets for 2014. In this regard, the draft policy framework states that government plans to 'increase the percentage of children who have access to formal Grade R programmes to 80% by 2014 and 100% by 2019'.

Of particular interest to educators concerned about school readiness as this relates to academic performance and vocational training in later years, in its introductory remarks the document clearly states that universal access will not be compulsory - and that government's commitment to it 'does not place any obligation on the state to offer Grade R'. Nevertheless, the impression has been created that Grade R education will be compulsory by 2019 (Cape Times). The thrust of this statement is 'access'. Whether the target for next year is likely to be met remains a moot point.

In a speech in February at the handover of a Grade R unit to a school in KwaZulu-Natal, Motshekga said that a plan had been developed 'to address deficiencies in the system and to support all initiatives geared to promote quality Grade R programmes'. This suggests that the focus of the draft policy framework is, in fact, on the quality of the programmes available - hence the release of a draft National Curriculum Framework for Children from Birth to Four, which was gazetted with the policy framework on 15 August for comment. According to this document, early childhood development (ECD) programmes in South Africa are different from those in other countries - mainly because of 'the urgent need to effect social transformation through integrated care and education' for South Africa's youngest children whose social conditions place them at risk. The draft curriculum framework also recognises the need to 'professionalise' service providers.

The 2001 White Paper on ECD spoke of universal access to Grade R by 2010. According to the draft policy framework, in 2009 this target was shifted to 2014. It has now been delayed by a further five years. Unfortunately, this means that Grade R will not be compulsory in 2019 or at any time in the foreseeable future.
News Home

 Tag This
 Tell A Friend
del.icio.us digg this Slashdot
Rate:
0 ratings
Views: 226

Comments: 0 Bookmarked: 0 Tagged: 0



0 Comments | Login to add comment

Site map | FAQs | Terms and Privacy | Contact Us
Copyright 2008-2010 by UNPAN - United Nations Public Administration Network