Faizel Patel – 28/07/2021
The South African Representative for UNICEF says COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on learners and schooling across the globe.
According to the latest statistics, South African schoolchildren are a full school year behind off where they should be because of the impact of disrupted education since the Coronavirus outbreak.
Learners returned to schools on Monday, after the country was put back on lockdown level three regulations.
Speaking to Radio Islam, UNICEF’s Christine Muhigana says the interruption of the academic year has had a devastating impact on learners especially over the past sixteen months.
“Over the past sixteen months alone we estimate that 400,000 if not 500,000 learners would have dropped out of school altogether., This brings the total number of out of school children in South Africa up to 750,000.”
Muhigana says South Africa cannot afford to lost more learners or even another hour learning.
“It is imperative that children continue to learn and continue to benefit from the protective environment that schools offer; continue to be in touch with peers so that they learn the social skills that all of us learnt in school and interacting with our children in our communities or even beyond our communities.”
Muhigana says remedial and catchup programme’s in schools are essential for learners to get up to speed with the academic curriculum and to make up for lost time because of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Listen to the interview with Christine Muhigana