Directions on re-opening of schools and measures to combat the spread of COVID-19
Yesterday afternoon, the Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga, published Directions regarding the re-opening of schools and measures to address, prevent and combat the spread of COVID-19 (Notice 302 of 2020).
The effect of these Directions is that independent schools do not have discretion to phase the return of learners differently to the phasing determined for public schools by the Department of Basic Education. This means that, on Monday, 1 June 2020, only Grade 7 and 12 learners are allowed to return to school.
The content of the Directions issued by the Minister on Friday, 29 May 2020, are materially incongruent with the documents received by ISASA and the National Alliance of Independent School Associations (NAISA) – of which ISASA is a member – from the Department of Basic Education on Thursday, 28 May 2020.
ISASA is seeking clarification from the DBE urgently regarding these inconsistencies. Until such time as the existing regulations are amended and published in the Government Gazette, only Grade 7 and 12 pupils may return to school on Monday, 1 June 2020.