20 000 Teachers Couldn't Be Vaxxed Due To Testing Positive

Thousands of teachers were not able to get vaccinated during the education sector's vaccine rollout. Testing positive for Covid was only one of the reasons why this happened. 

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Around 20 000 teachers were not able to get the Covid-19 vaccine during the two week vaccination programme because they did not meet the criteria.  This could have meant that they currently had Covid-19, they had had Covid-19 within the last 30 days, they had had the seasonal flu vaccine within the last 14 days, or they were pregnant.

The Department of Basic Education is hoping that these educators and others can still be vaccinated at a later stage. It has subsequently been confirmed by the Department of Health that those who are pregnant or breastfeeding can still get the Covid vaccine.

The Department released a new edition of the DBE TV News Bulletin which gives updates from within the sector for the past week.

Most people in the sector have by now received their Covid vaccine.

Over 200 000 people were added to the education sector vaccine programme bringing the total targeted vaccinations to 789 000. The original target was 582 000.

This number includes staff who transport children, food handlers, those who do remote learning programmes as well as security and cleaning personnel.

DBE Minister, Angie Motshekga, said:

We expect the 16 000 that was on leave to come for vaccination because we want to remove the dispensation of getting people staying at home because they have co-morbidities.

The department had a 8 July deadline set which was extended. They could not meet the original deadline due to delays with the second phase of the rollout.

They experienced a number of difficulties with the programme. The first phase is said to have gone very well but the second phase saw delays. These delays were due to teachers who are not employed by the state having to be registered separately.

Those who got infected during the rollout as well as those who took flu vaccines will be vaccinated once schools reopen.

The Minister said that they would like to have everyone who could be vaccinated, vaccinated when schools reopen for the third term.

Migration of Early Childhood Development to Department of Basic Education

All functions related to the Early Childhood Development (ECD) sector will be moved to the DBE. The President said two years ago that this shift needs to happen.

For the past two years, the DBE has been evaluating what tasks need to be done and who has been doing it as well as the budget.

The shift will officially be in place from 1 April 2022. 

DBE has always been responsible with developing the ECD curriculum. 

Best Principal Award

Dr Ngwako Stephen Sebopetsa, a principal in Limpopo won the Global Principal Award for excellent winner accumin, winner spirit, significant work and contributions in the education field.

He is a principal at Rathaga Primary School in Ragwadu and has been in the sector for 36 years. His motto in life is that hard work kills nobody.

He said, "I'm so grateful that in the country and also outside the country, they can recognise the work that I've been doing from my time as a teacher up to now".

(11th July: Story edited with further details on why the educators did not qualify for the vaccine at the moment.)

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