Teachers and unions have expressed frustration over the new school calendar, released by the Department of Basic Education on Tuesday.
Teachers say they are concerned by the length of the schooling calendar, which has about 10 weeks of learning in each term.
School terms are usually much shorter, and teachers’ concerns are that 10 weeks is a long time for learners to concentrate without a break.
The South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) said that it was angered by the department, which sought to “mechanically manage” teachers.
It said that according to all five unions representing teachers, a survey was conducted and it showed that many schools in rural provinces would not be ready to receive learners by 15 February.
“There are still some severe challenges about the quality of the protective wear that is being sent to the schools,” said Sadtu spokesperson Xolani Fakude.
“By far and large there is indeed a challenge in terms of school readiness for the reopening in particularly for the rural provinces which includes Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape and Limpopo.”
“A majority of the principals, about 50%, in those provinces even indicate that they are not confident that by the 15th of February they would be ready to receive learners back to school and to ensure safety regulations,” said Fakude.
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