Home PodcastJulie Alli Teachers’ union welcomes Education Ministry’s decision to retain October holidays

Teachers’ union welcomes Education Ministry’s decision to retain October holidays

by Zahid Jadwat

PRETORIA – The National Professional Teachers’ Organisation of South Africa (NAPTOSA) has welcomed the Basic Education department’s decision not to scrap the October holidays, after the ministry contemplated the move to make up for lost teaching time.


Last month, the department contemplated scrapping the October holidays as a measure to make up for lost time. Teacher unions, governing body associations and a principals’ association opposed the move.


“After consultations, it was quite clear and for very valid reasons that we have to keep the calendar as it stands,” said Motshekga at a media briefing over the weekend.


“I’m very happy that sanity prevails. For a number of reasons, we need to retain the holiday. It is not just a break but we’ve had a full school term (the normal 50 days) and it is necessary for people to catch their breath in the midst of this pandemic,” said Basil Manuel, NAPTOSA’s Executive Director.
“It is also a time for people to to heal a little because of all the stresses and strains the teachers are under but the children also need a break,” he added.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a massive loss in learning time at schools, especially in underprivileged communities. Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga revealed that between 50% and 75% of learning was lost in 2020. Furthermore, at least 50% has been lost so far in 2021.


Julie Alli spoke to Basil Manuel, Executive Director of the National Professional Teachers’ Association of South Africa (NAPTOSA), on News & Views. Listen to the full discussion here:


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