Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said n a media briefing on Sunday morning that online applications for Grade 7 learners heading to Grade 8 will open on 10 August.
Lesufi said applications for Grade 1 and Grade 8 learners will for the first time be introduced in a phased approach, to ensure the system is not overloaded, and that every application is successful.
The first phase will close at midnight on 3 September.
Phase one is aimed at Grade 7 learners entering Grade 8 in public schools. Once these learners are accommodated, applications will be made available to those outside the public education system.
The second phase will start on 13 September, and will close on 8 October at midnight.
Phase two is for Grade 1 learners, applicants from outside Gauteng, and learners applying to transition from private to public schools.
The placement of phase one learners will start on 15 October until 30 November. Phase two will start on November 15, and end on 30 November.
Those unable to apply from home will be able to do so by using the department’s 47 decentralised walk-in centres, where all applicants will be assisted by staff members.
This is for people without internet access, and learners who live with elderly relatives who are not able to apply for them from their homes.
Provide accurate details
The department emphasised that parents or guardians must provide it with one reliable cellphone number.
This is crucial, as all information and links will be sent to this number. Without it, learner applications will not be able to be processed.
Schools will begin to verify and update parent/guardian details from Monday until 6 August.
During this time, parents/guardians will be able to start the five-step application process.
Parents/guardians must also provide the department with the five schools they would like their child to be accepted to.
The first school listed is assumed to be the priority school.
Mindset change needed
Lesufi made an impassioned plea with parents to open their school options to include township schools, and not to judge schools based on “beautiful uniforms”, but rather by academic performance.
He said the department was busy piloting ranking schools in the province, in light of a number of schools performing well academically in townships.
“We’re building beautiful schools in townships, with free data, laptops, tablets and smart boards. We want to change the mindset of South Africans. Don’t be rigid; don’t rely on history.”
For more details on the application process, watch the YouTube video, courtesy of the Gauteng Department of Education, below.