The Department of Basic Education has clamps down on a number of institutions in the Western Cape that are claiming to operate as ‘Independent Schools’ and that have been ‘enrolling’ learners for the 2016 academic year.
The department stresses this has serious implications particularly for the learners involved, as their education is not recognized.
It stresses that all Independent schools have to operate within the confines of the Constitution and The South African Schools Act. It adds that special requirements need to be adhered for independent schools to be declared formal institutions.
“Registration as an independent school is required to conduct any form of tutoring at an institution,” says spokesperson to minister of basic education Jessica Shelver.
The department warns that parents should take caution when enrolling their children at these institutions that the WCED will not recognize any tuition that takes place at the school as formal education.
“The learner will therefore still need to complete their formal education at a formal institution registered with the Western Cape Education Department,” says Shelver.
She adds: “When parents enrol their children at an independent school they are advised to ensure that the school has a registration certificate.”
Parents are advised to trust their instincts.
“If parents are suspicious of a school which cannot present a registration certificate, or suspect the school is operating illegally, then I urge them to contact the WCED,” says Shelver.
The Department warns that anyone participating in these illegal operations will be imprisoned or fined.
“I also want to caution that it is a criminal offence for any person to operate an institution that is not registered with the WCED as an independent school. Any person operating such a school shall be guilty of an offence and liable, on conviction, to a fine or imprisonment for up to three months,” says Shelver.VOC