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Compiled by Vhahangwele Nemakonde

Digital Deputy News Editor

School nutrition programme gets R9.2bn of basic education dept’s R31.8bn budget

The overall 2023/24 budget allocation for the department of basic education has seen an increase of 7% from last year’s overall allocation.

The department of basic education has allocated R9.279 billion to the national school nutrition programme (NSNP).

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga presented her department’s budget for the 2023/24 financial speech at the National Assembly on Thursday.

The overall 2023/24 budget allocation for the department of basic education is R31.8 billion, an increase of 7% from last year’s overall allocation.

ALSO READ: Motshekga apologises for school nutrition programme disruptions, says ‘the situation has stabilised’

The breakdown of the budget by Education Programme

  • Administration has been allocated R538.8 million
  • Curriculum Policy Support and Monitoring – R3.526 billion
  • Teacher Education Human Resource and Institutional Development – R1.508 billion
  • Planning Information and Assessment – R16.616 billion
  • Educational Enrichment Services – R9.594 billion
  • Condition Grants – R25.329 billion, an increase of 9.5% from last year

The specific allocations for Conditional Grants

  • The Mathematics, Science and Technology (MST) Grant – R433.1 million
  • Infrastructure delivery – R13.9 billion
  • The Accelerated School Infrastructure Development Initiative (ASIDI) – R2.1 billion
  • HIV and AIDS – R241.7 million
  • The National School Nutrition Programme – R9.279 billion

Motshekga’s budget comes after food delivery challenges last month, which left pupils in some areas of KwaZulu-Natal without meals at the beginning of the second term of the school year.

Following monitoring visits conducted by her department, KZN premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube and other officials to assess the state of readiness in the implementation of the feeding programme, Motshekga apologised to the nation.

ALSO READ: Volunteers and organisations aid school nutrition programme

“We are fully aware that for many of our pupils, food from the National School Nutrition Programme is the only meals they might have in a day,” said Motshekga at the time.

“It is for this reason that as the Department of Basic Education, we became particularly concerned with the disruptions to the feeding programme. For whatever inconvenience that was caused, as government we sincerely apologise.”

According to Motshekga, the National School Nutrition Programme feeds about 9.6 million children on a daily basis across the country.

She said the department had developed an online tool using technology that delivers real-time data, to be used for analysing and assessment purposes.

ALSO READ: Probe into KZN school nutrition programme launched

“We have been looking for an efficient model with which to run the programme because there are weaknesses, and as a result, we do not believe that we are getting the full benefit in terms of value for every Rand invested in it.”

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