Teacher Assistants Commended By Western Cape Education Department

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The Western Cape Education Department says they are pleased with the work that has been done by education and general assistants as part of the Presidential Youth Employment Initiative (PYEI). 

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The Presidential Youth Employment Initiative (PYEI) together with the Department of Basic Education (DBE) entered into Phase Three of recruiting young people to be education and general assistants in schools across South Africa. 

The Western Cape Education Department (WCED) has praised the work done by these assistants and held a workshop over two days to assess the progress that has been made with the PYEI and to find solutions on how to retain the young candidates who are a part of the programme. 

The PYEI introduced this project in order to provide the education sector with young people who could help manage the impact of Covid-19 on schooling by supporting teachers and learners in the classroom. 

Western Cape Education MEC David Maynier says that education and general assistants have spoke very positively of their experiences at the schools, saying that they have learnt a lot through their experineces. 

Around 20 000 education and general assistants have been placed at school in the province. 

Maynier says that he is interested in having conversations with the department in order to find out how they can establish a pathway from the initiative into the teaching profession. 

Teachers have also found these assistants to be of great help, especially in schools with learners who have special needs. 

Education assistants have been given specific duties in the classroom which has made the process of teaching easier, said one teacher. 

Assistants have been trained in priority areas such as: mathematics, science and technology subjects, reading and literary for Reading Champions, ICT/e-Cadres and handymen and women. 

"It's really been a positive experience so far and we have had a lot of positive feedback in terms of their [the candidates] support at school level," said Deputy Chief Education Specialist: E-learning Anita Van Vuuren. 

She says that assistants have helped teachers who struggle with technology and says that schools should invest in these candidates when they attempt to initiate digital projects. 


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