WC Education MEC Starts Off National Book Week in Oudtshoorn

The ability to read for meaning and pleasure is the most important skill that children can learn in primary school. Western Education MEC Debbie Schäfer knows this as well as any educator, as she kicked off her national book week by visiting Laerskool Laurus in Oudtshoorn.


Having begun in 1919, National book week is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country. Each year, thousands of young people around the country take part in events at schools, libraries, and bookshops, as well as celebrating at home and interacting with authors both online and in person.

Every year in September, National Book Week is held to encourage all South Africans of all ages to cherish reading.

This year the literacy initiative began on Monday 06 September and will run until Sunday 12 September. Western Cape's Education MEC Debbie Schäfer kicked hers off by visiting Laerskool Laurus in Oudtshoorn where she spent time reading with Foundation Phase learners. 

In a statement released on Tuesday, she encouraged all parents to instill a habit of reading at an early age as it is among the greatest gifts a parent can give to their child. 

I urge all parents to encourage their children to read from an early age. A love of reading is the greatest gift you can give them! And if you need something for them to read, the WCED’s Virtual Library has a range of eBooks in different languages to get you started: https://wcedeportal.co.za/eresource/121686

The MEC also went on to say she got to meet with the parents as well as the school's staff members to get a sense of what makes the school unique. She lauded the school for how far it has progressed despite the challenges it had to face in the past.  

I was very impressed by the attitude and dedication of the staff and parents of Laerskool Laurus. Previously known as Laerskool Oudtshoorn-Noord, it has been transformed from being a school with dwindling enrolment and sub-par facilities into an excellent example of a quality school.

Schäfer also pointed out the importance of the ability of the school's community to take ownership of its facilities and how she admires the way in which they have invested their time, skills and resources to see it improve.

She added that this is often the result of dedicated leadership on the part of the school's staff members and its governing body, and that a school with this type of working relationship will always progress going forward.


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