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South Africa - Preprimary & Primary Education

percent school level enrollment


Although some provinces provide preprimary education, the scale is limited and the field of early childhood development is dominated by the nongovernmental sector in South Africa. Preprimary schools must be registered with local authorities, and their operations fall under the control of provincial educational departments, who oversee both public and private preschool programs. In reality, insufficient numbers of trained teaching staff at the preprimary level were available in 2001, whether through publicly or privately funded institutions, to mount an effective preprimary education program.

School enrollments in general are very difficult to specify and compare in South Africa due to the fact that ratios vary markedly by racial group, gender, income level, and geographical location. Additionally, the manner in which age levels are defined and students of particular ages are included or excluded further complicates the reliability of measures and their comparability across regions, sources, and time. That said, 1 estimate of South Africa's primary gross enrollment for 1995 was 131 percent, whereas a UNICEF fact sheet updated in December 2000 noted the gross enrollment rate at the primary level to be 98 percent for boys and 86 percent for girls, with corresponding net enrollment rates of 88 percent for boys and 86 percent for girls. In 1995 approximately 49 percent of pupils enrolled in primary school were girls. Under the new educational reforms of the 1990s the average class size at the primary level was to be 35 students, much lower than the earlier number in impoverished communities though significantly higher than the prevailing class size in white majority schools. This goal reportedly had been met by 2001, according to the Department of Education.

Children are admitted to primary school at age six. There is a junior primary school phase that lasts for three years and a senior primary school phase that also lasts for three years. In the first three years, children learn to read, write, and count. A start is also made at learning a second language. The next phase stresses reading and oral proficiency in one's first language and in the second language taught. In addition, primary pupils are taught mathematics, general science, history, geography, and skills such as needlework, woodwork, and art.


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over 6 years ago

How could i get the syllabus of the pre primary education in South Africa?

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over 6 years ago

How could i get the syllabus of the pre primary education in South Africa?

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over 6 years ago

How could i get the syllabus of the pre primary education in South Africa?

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about 2 years ago

Dear Educators

I'm Johann Kruger, a South African citizen, residing in South Korea since 1999. I need some clarification on the following:
1) Can someone without a proper degree in early childhood education manage a pre-school in South Africa?

2) Can a pre-school be transfered from one person to the other in the event of death or sickness?

3) Can a person without any educational qualifications act as the manager of a pres-school and appoint family members without a proper degree in ECD?

I am asking these important questions as we as a family want to report the actions of individuals who are managing a medium-sized pre-school in the Eastern Province without the proper qualifications but do not know who to contact or how to go about it.
Our eldest sister owned and managed a pre-school in South Africa for 23 years, but unfortunately committed suicide at the school during the course of 2015. The husband then immediately stepped in and appointed the eldest daughter as the new principal, knowing that she does not possess the proper ECD qualifications. A few months later one more daughter joined the school as a teacher. She has a degree from UNISA in Economics, but again no proper ECD qualifications.
We are desperately trying to protect the legacy of our late sister and feel very strongly that these people are not acting in accordance with the rules and regulations of the South African Government with regards to the qualifications needed to manage a pre-primary school. I personally feel they are running this pre-school illegally, to say the least.
Now the million dollar question.
Who can we contact to investigate this operation?
What can we as remaining family do to stop this operation should it be illegal?

I have written to the Department of Education in the Eastern Cape on several occasions but have not received any answers from them since November 2015.
Would you kindly inform us with regards to our rights within the boundaries of the South African laws on Education.
We humbly ask that our identity remain secret until further investigation as we do not want this issue to develop in an unnecessary family feud.

Respectfully requested.

Johann Kruger (South Korea)