A study has found that many pupils have dropped out of school due to the Covid-19 pandemic. [Picture: Darren Stewart / Gallo Images]
CAPE TOWN – A recent study has found that nearly one million South African learners have dropped out of school, bringing the dropout rate in the country to its highest level in 20 years.
Data from the latest National Income Dynamics Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey (NIDS-CRAM) indicates that 500 000 learners between the ages of 7 and 17 dropped out of school during the COVID-19 pandemic. This tripled the number of dropouts from 230 000, before the pandemic, to 750 000 in May 2021.
The research was conducted by 30 researchers, across six local universities, together with the Human Sciences Research Council and the Department of Education.
Speaking to Salaamedia, Child Protection Programme Manager at Save the Children S.A (StCSA) Divya Naidoo explained that learners quit their schooling for a number of reasons, including poverty.
Often, she said, girls are forced to stay at home to look after younger siblings whilst their parents go to work.