THE Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi has welcomed the successful first week of online admissions applications after more than 100 000 applications for Grade 8 were completed.
The department’s 2022 online admissions applications system opened last Tuesday for Grade 7 learners currently enrolled in the public school system in Gauteng to apply for Grade 8.
“We are vindicated that the two-phase process was in the best interest of both learners and parents,” Lesufi said.
“There have been three main problems, one being the issue of ID numbers where we are linked to the home affairs database but there were challenges and limitations but we managed to rectify that.”
The process for Grade 1s and 8s was split into two phases this year to ensure that the high demand for school placement was managed more efficiently.
By Friday, the number of successful applications from Grade 8 was at 104 504.
“Accordingly, this milestone is indicative of the hard work that has been put in by the GDE staff who are handling an average of 5 000 calls a day at the GDE contact and walk-in centres across the province. Our gratitude must go to parents and guardians whose patience and understanding have made this process smoother,” education spokesperson Steve Mabona said.
Learners who were outside the public schooling system and eligible for Grade 8 would have to wait until September 13 to apply, as well as eligible Grade 1 learners.
The system began smoothly last week with some parents and guardians having to overcome a number of challenges including incorrect ID numbers or home addresses – even after the parents had verified their details at schools. “Indeed our back-office support – including the districts and schools – has been extremely busy providing assistance to parents and guardians so that they are better able to navigate the system,” Mabona said.
The provincial department has encouraged parents who have not yet verified their information to communicate with their child’s school to check if schools have updated details.
If the schools do not prove to be helpful, parents have been urged to visit the GDE’s district office, walk-in centres or call the GDE’s contact centre.
The first phase of the 2022 online admissions process, which is for parents and guardians whose children are currently in Grade 7 at a public school in Gauteng and would be going to Grade 8 in 2022, will end on September 3.
Phase 2 would begin on September 13 and focus on parents and guardians whose children would be going into Grade 1 in 2022 or Grade 8 but were not in a public school in Gauteng. It would end on October 8.
* Own Correspondent