On Monday the mod was the complete opposite for the learners who use to kissing and hugging after having not seen other for a while as schools reopened. Most schools took their learners temperatures as they arrived, and entered the results on a health report. The monitoring is just one of the new realities at schools countrywide.
Unfortunately some of the schools in Sekhukhune like Dipakapakeng in Tafelkop had to reopen their classes with poor sanitation and stinky pit latrine toilet.
A conversation at school was initiated here and there between learners, which was hardtop out because of their mask. This was the norm for most of the schools. The new lunchtime was hard adjustment for some learners.
Meanwhile at Mathibeng primary school for learners who enjoy for the latest gossip were left baffled as there was no room for that. On a day at break time, there was no noise.
Public officials visited various schools to assess if they comply with Covid-19 regulations. Premier Stanley Mathabatha visited Patoga primary school in Ga Mphahlele and Derek Kobe secondary school in Lebowakgomo
District mayorof Sekhukhune, Stanley Ramaila went to Nakgwadi secondary school in Mooihoek while Makhuduthamaga mayor, Minah Bahula inspected Nkgonyeletse secondary school amongst others.
However the Public Servant Association of South Africa said the reopening of schools on Monday amounted to discrimination against poor communities where facilities had been vandalised.
The union found it unfair that some pupils would be left behind, but would be expected to write the same exam as all others
“We continued to receive reports from provincial offices and members over the weekend, which found that schools, specifically those in rural and poorer communities, still do not meet the required safety standard,” union explained.
South African Democratic Teacher Union (SADTU), provincial secretary, Sowell Tjebane said most of the rural schools still experience lack of proper sanitation, water tanker or PPEs
Tjebane said they are also concerned over the lack of support for their call on adequate screeners, which has fallen on deaf ears.
The Public Servant Association’s president, Mashudu Ramulumo said as part of an effort to curb the spread of covid-19, learners are prohibited to go out of their classroom unnecessarily.
“Learners where taken for orientation to adjust to the new way of living which includes social distancing and not exchanging stationery as they are used to,” said Ramulumo.
MEC for education Polly Boshielo said officials who visited schools across the province gave her positive feedback. Boshielo said biggest challenges that schools are facing in the province is water and sanitation.
“All schools have personal protective equipment except those whose principals did not come back to work during the schools reopening preparation period,” said MEC.
The Limpopo education insists that non compliances schools would not be allowed to reopen. Department confirmed that over 44 schools had been identified as non-compliant and are being attended to.