Here’s What’s Needed For School Applications

Applying to your child’s first school can be quite daunting, however, with the help from the Basic Education Department, it does not need to be so scary. Here is what you need to prepare when applying to schools in South Africa.


According to the South African Schools Act of 1996, all children between the ages of 7 and 15 are required to attend school. It is the responsibility of the parents and guardians to ensure that their children are registered at a school and that they regularly attend school.

Parents and guardians should ensure that their children are registered for the following year, by applying before the end of the current school year. 

Children may be registered at schools that are located near their home or the parent's workplace.

Parents are reminded to keep an eye on the school admission deadlines of their province, as each province has their own registration deadlines.

It is the parent or guardian’s choice where they would like to register their child, whether it is at a public or independent school. Public schools are controlled by the government and independent schools are privately governed. 

Independent schools need to be registered with the Provincial Education Department. Whereas public schools should be established by the MEC for education in the province.

Parents may check the Provincial Education Department website to see if the school they hope to enrol their child at is registered before they make any registrations and payments.

Click here to visit the Provincial Education Department website.

When registering, parents will need the following documentation:

  • Application form from the school
  • Official birth certificate or child’s ID (Baptism certificates will not be regarded as proof of birth date)
  • Immunization card (primary schools only)
  • Transfer card and latest school report (If the child is moving from one school to another)

Non-South African citizens need to include the following additional documents:

  • Study permit
  • Temporary or permanent residence permit or proof that you have applied for permission to stay in South Africa.

Application forms may be collected from the schools.

School fees differ from school to school. If parents are unable to afford to pay they will need to make arrangements with the school.

A school may not refuse a learner admission, however, they may take legal action against the parent if the parent fails to pay outstanding school fees.


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