Schooling

SAHRC Warns Against Corporal Punishment

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is concerned that there are still schools that administer corporal punishment despite it being illegal.
 
The rights body says that the practice is contrary to the country's constitution and international human rights standards.

Addressing the opening of its two-day conference on the subject at Parktown in Johannesburg, SAHRC chairperson, Lawrence Mushwana, says corporal punishment in schools infringes on the right of a learner to basic education.

Teenage Mums Require Support

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) says the only one in three teenagers who fall pregnant continues her education after delivery, despite the South African Schools Act, which says that ‘girls who become pregnant should not be denied access to education.’
 
The UNFPA estimates that 51 000 South African schoolgirls gave birth in 2011 and the Department of Health reports that eight percent of the women who give birth in public hospitals and clinics are less than 18 years old.
 

No Feeding Scheme at Limpopo Schools

Rights group, SECTION27, says that despite government's national school feeding scheme, pupils at Tshinavhe Secondary School have been left hungry.
 
SECTION27 states that pupils at a Limpopo school are writing exams without having had school meals for over two months.
 
The organisation filed an urgent application in the high court in Pretoria on 8 November 2013 asking that the meals be delivered to Tshinavhe Secondary School in the Vhembe district.
 

30% Pass Rate Fail University Students

The Institute of Race Relations (IRR) says the government’s 30 percent pass rate at school level is why many students fail at universities.

IRR research analyst, Unathi Matwase, points out that, government needed to invest more in primary and secondary education to ensure the success of young people at university level.

The 30 percent pass rate is not challenging enough, she says at the release of an SAIRR report, A powder keg in our midst: South Africa’s youth.

SAHRC Condemns the Burning of Schools

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has condemned the burning of schools in the Vuwani District in Limpopo‚ which it says has affected tens of thousands of learners.
 
The SAHRC says official reports confirmed that 13 schools had been burnt through acts of arson while unofficial reports put the figure at 17 schools.
 

For Poor Children, Two Healthy Meals a Day Can Keep Obesity Away

Schoolchildren who receive a nutritious lunchtime meal are less likely to be overweight or suffer from childhood obesity. And those who receive both breakfast and lunch are three times less likely to suffer this fate.

Tackling childhood obesity is important because it may result in adult obesity and these children developing non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, hypertension and heart disease later in life.

SA Poor in Maths and Science, WEF Report

South Africa is almost dead last among 140 countries in terms of its maths and science education, according to this year's World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Competitiveness report.
 
Last year's report also put the country last out of 148 countries and the report for 2015/16 painted a dismal picture, with South Africa placed at 138 out of 140 countries.
 
The only two countries ranked lower were Egypt and Paraguay and in terms of Internet access in schools, South Africa was 119 out of 140.
 

Lesufi Urged to Provide Condoms at Schools

Soweto civil society groups say Gauteng Education MEC, Panyaza Lesufi, should provide the province’s pupils with prophylaxis.

Small, local nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) in Soweto have called on Lesufi to provide Gauteng pupils with condoms at schools just three months after the National Department of Basic Education proposed a new draft policy that would make the same recommendation for schools nationally.

According to Lesufi, he has not objection to condoms in schools but says HIV awareness had to accompany condoms.

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