The plight of matriculates in the Eastern Cape who cannot find work is a direct result of the provincial Department of Education depriving children the opportunity to become part of the global IT spectrum.

While private institutions are doing their part by donating computer equipment to poor, rural schools, their efforts are being undermined by the department, who seemingly does not have the leadership or will to lead the children of this province into the technological age.

Cases in point are two schools in Willowvale: Nomthandazo- and Mboya Junior Secondary Schools who received donations of computers, but the expectations of these children remain unfulfilled, because there are no classrooms at these schools to set up a working computer laboratory.

The MEC of Education, Mahlubandile Qwase, in reply to a parliamentary question, stated in

the Legislature in November last year the Department had “undertaken to send a team to assess the situation and determine the financial implications thereof before the closing of schools this December”. Furthermore, he added: “The ICT office will visit the school in early December to make an assessment of equipment, human resource capacity and infrastructure needs.

Two months into the new school year, the DA is yet to get an answer from the department whether this was in fact done or not. In the meantime a new generation of learners will go without the training they so desperately need to compete in a world ruled by technology.

It is unacceptable that our children are being denied the opportunities they need to lead meaningful, positive lives.

The Eastern Cape Department of Education should start thinking global but more importantly act locally.

The DA believes in a core minimum of resources for each school. We believe South African children must emerge from school literate and numerate at internationally benchmarked levels. The state must work in constructive partnership with private enterprise, civil society, teachers and parents to put such a system in place.

For further information, please contact Veliswa Mvenya, MPL on 082 418 7916

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