ActionSA Commends Gauteng Class of 2023 –But Calls for Schools to Better Equip Youth

ActionSA commends the matric class of 2023 for the improvement in the matric pass rate (from 84.4% in 2022 to 85.4% in 2023) despite the difficulties they faced over the year. This shows that Gauteng’s educational system is stable. However, there is still concern and space for improvement to prepare the youth for the future and meet the national economy’s demands.

During 2023, several reports of increased absenteeism and cheating scandals raised considerable concern about the current schooling system’s failure to adequately prepare thousands of young people to enter the real world and tertiary education.

The South African schooling system fails to work on the youth’s strengths, which would sharpen their skills and offer them economic opportunities. Instead, it disempowers our youth, who are not taught the skills needed to contribute to society and are forced to attend traditional schools, which are not everyone’s first choice or the right way of learning.

ActionSA believes that education and learning go beyond the classroom. The betterment of youth also involves families, communities, civil society, and businesses that can help students learn and improve themselves continuously. This support could drastically reduce absenteeism, giving students the confidence to attend classes and not cheat during exams.

An ActionSA government will implement several changes that include:

– Using the budget, the Department of Education allocated to ensure that public schools in suburbs and townships are equally up to standard.
– We believe competent and dedicated leadership is required, and the system must be depoliticised, preventing unions from dictating administrative and policy decisions.
– We are encouraging the support and training of teachers to see improved educational outcomes and prioritising the entry of new teachers who are adequately equipped to teach into the system.
– Introducing alternative educational streams to offer diverse choices for learners, such as vocational training, would ensure everyone has access to an education right for them at the right time and in the correct format.
• They ensure that teachers, our unsung heroes, receive substantially better pay that reflects their dedication and equips them with the necessary tools to develop stimulating learning environments in schools.
• And we are introducing extracurricular activities crucial for developing well-rounded and balanced individuals with soft skills.

ActionSA will always advocate for equal access to quality education for all that sufficiently prepares the youth to cope with real-world life and adopt alternative methods of achieving economic prosperity. Education is the most powerful tool for creating a prosperous society, which would aid individuals and families in overcoming the persisting patterns of inequality many have been subjected to.