The deadline for written submissions to the Essential Services Commission (ESC) to ensure that children are kept safe and supervised during strike action is this Friday, 6 July 2018.
The ESC is investigating whether or not there should be a minimum staff presence at schools during education strikes. They want to hear from parents, educators and anyone in the school community about what happens when a strike occurs.
All the information needed for a written submission can be found here. Public hearings start on 11 July 2018 and in order to speak at these vital hearings, written submissions must be made first.
The DA requested the investigation because we believe that parents and guardians should be able to trust that their children will be safe at school during school hours.
Children must be supervised and school leaders must be present to deal with any emergencies. Food and cleaning services must not be interrupted, and children’s well-being and health must be ensured.
Too often, the voices of concerned parents and community members are drowned out by SADTU. Even though SADTU claims to have the best interests of children at heart and often campaign about school safety.
Despite these claims, they keep arguing that no one’s life is in danger when teachers go on strike. This is not the case as there have been a number of cases of children’s safety being compromised when they are left on their own when teachers go on strike.
SADTU have also tried to misrepresent the DA’s position. The DA does not want all teachers to be banned from striking.
We do not want school staff to abandon learners and possibly place them at risk, that is why we have proposed some staff to stay at school to ensure that children are safe.
The safety of children should be our number one priority. Children must be able to focus on getting an education so they have the best chance of getting a job and a better future. If they are not safe at school, this future will be compromised.
Nomsa Marchesi MP
DA Shadow Deputy Minister of Basic Education
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