MEC Panyaza Lesufi answered parliamentary questions on the Sikhulekile Secondary collapsed roof asked by Democratic Alliance Education Spokesperson, Nkele Molapo, on 10 September 2019 in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature.
MEC Lesufi said the Provincial Department of Education has assessed the infrastructure of Sikhululekile Secondary School and prepared a works order to the value of R1 660 327.45 towards the replacement of trusses and roof of the school in Temba Unit D.
In reply to a parliamentary question asked by the Democratic Alliance, the MEC said given that the estimated costs of the works are above the Department’s maintenance roster threshold, the Department will only be able to respond through the Rehabilitation, Renovation and Refurbishment program which is implemented by the Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development.
“This process will require the adjustment of the Estimates of Capital Expenditure during the midterm budget adjustment period to enable the necessary planning to happen in line with the Infrastructure Delivery Management System requirements.
“The timelines for the implementation of the project can only be determined once the project planning processes have been concluded,” he said.
Asked since the school has been identified as a school of specialization, when will an alternate science lab be provided?
MEC Lesufi said the school has been identified as a School of Specialization but not yet gazetted.
“It should be noted that all schools that have been identified for conversion to Schools of Specialization would not necessarily have infrastructure that is fully aligned to the new curriculum requirements and as such, it may take more than a year to attain full conversion depending on the current state of infrastructure.
“In ensuring full alignment of the school, the planning process will include the production of an initiation report that outlines the high-level business case together with the estimated project cost and proposed schedule in line with the new curriculum.
“The Department does not currently have any plans to provide an alternate lab and thus the school will utilize the existing lab once the refurbishment project has been completed,” he said.
He said teaching and learning of science continue in collaboration with the University of Stellenbosch that provides the school with a mobile laboratory to conduct practicals every Friday.
“It must be noted that the learners have not missed the theory part of the subject since it is not taught in the labs and the educators conduct intervention classes after school and during the weekend by improvising for informal tasks”.
MEC Lesufi said the Grade 12 Maths and Science Pass rate at the school for the past three academic years show that the performance for both subjects has not been adversely affected. The subjects for 2016, 2017 and 2018 show good results with Mathematics at 81.5% 88.4% 90.7% and Physical Sciences 75.9%, 73.2% and 87.5%.
Ms Molapo said she is not satisfied with the response of the MEC.
“His response does not have time frames on when the roof will be repaired because the roof was damaged last year already and nothing has been done to attempt to fix it this far,” she said.