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covid19 south africa


The University of Cape Town recently released a statement that its council approved, in principle, a compulsory vaccination policy. The institution becomes the first university to move towards instructed vaccination in order to access its campuses.  


The final leg of the countdown to the final matric exams has begun, as over 700 000 full time candidates prepare to write. 


The Higher Education and training sector is calling on more students to get vaccinated. This comes amid concerns by Higher Health that only one-third of students have been vaccinated so far.


The issue around whether vaccination should be mandatory in higher learning institutions has led to student bodies taking a united stance against the idea. They believe that universities should instead address the underlying issues around why some students do not want to get vaccinated.

 


The school dropout rate is expected to surge in South Africa over the next few years if urgent interventions are not put in place. Education experts have also pointed that literacy rates are already declining.


There are now discussions happening about making the vaccination students compulsory. So far, South Africa has administered millions of vaccines to South Africans, a large number being that of the youth.


The South African Health Products Authority has approved the Pfizer vaccine for those 12 years old and above. This would be the first vaccine to be approved for children in South Africa.


Thousands of children in school going age, between 7 – 14 years old, have been reported to be lost by the schooling system. 


The Premier of KwaZulu-Natal, Sihle Zikalala has announced a record of over 1100 Covid-19 cases in 350 schools in Kwazulu-Natal. 


Unions within the education sector have expressed a great deal of concern following Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga's briefing on the impact of Covid-19 on schooling throughout the country on Sunday. They say they are not surprised by the current outcome of learning losses as the department could have taken better preventative measures.


Save The Children SA has said that Covid-19 could still have a dire social impact on children though they are less likely to be infected by the virus. Children have lost out on a large number of schooling days.


The Covid-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on the South African economy, and with that, the education sector has been terribly hit by the unfortunate effects of the virus as well. The private school sector with regards to primary school, high school, and tertiary institutions has also felt these effects which, in turn, has put to question the sustainability of private schooling institutions.


Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says the province was ready and prepared when it came to primary school learners to go back to daily classes. This follows a few changes in the registration process for grade 1 as well as grade 8 learners in the province being announced.


There are rising concerns when it comes to how online learning has become a normal way of teaching due to the Covid-19 pandemic. What impact can this have on children in the long term? Read further for more details.


Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga says that schools are ready to reopen as scheduled on Monday, 26 July depending on confirmation from President Cyril Ramaphosa and that vandalised schools in KwaZulu-Natal have made provisions to ensure their reopening on the same date. 


Teacher's union Naptosa says schools should commence as scheduled on Monday 26 July but that schools in KwaZulu-Natal are unable to reopen as planned due to property damage caused by last week's violence and looting. 


The Department of Basic Education has officially concluded it's nationwide vaccination drive for teachers and members of educational support staff but says assistance is still available. By the end of Wednesday, 500 000 jabs were administered.


Minister Blade Nzimande appeals to all university students who will remain behind on-campus accommodation residences to act responsibly as the country faces a third wave. This week, the Minister addresses many changes within the higher education sector due to Level 4 lockdown.


The South African Union Students recently completed their annual conference where they discussed the many difficult issues facing South African students.  The Careers Portal interviewed incoming SG Lukhanyo Daweti and he told us that the union is calling for an aggressive and clear strategy from the government in its implementation of blended learning amid the Covid pandemic. 

  


After President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that all in-person classes and experimental learning activities should end on Wednesday, Universities around the country have had to make plans. These plans outline if and how learning and teaching will continue under level 4 lockdown.

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