Gauteng Education Department has come under fire after parents failed to register their children for Grade 1 and 8 on Tuesday morning. The parents became more furious after the department’s new online registration system failed to pull through.
The system which went online last week crashed hours after going online. And despite receiving intense attention, the site still proves to be faulty even as at Monday night, hours before it was due to launch again. This however necessitated the delay in launching the site again on Tuesday morning.
Meanwhile, parents have expressed dissatisfaction with the department’s online system. A frustrated parent named Liz De Sa said she spent all night expressing fears about her child’s fate. “We have been told‚ repeatedly on Twitter‚ not to stress‚ everything will be fine… IT IS NOT FINE!.
“It has been over four weeks now since the communication from our school on the grade 1 and 8 application format and still….there is no clear‚ concise‚ trustworthy communication from the Gauteng Education Department,” De Sa remarked.
Another parent alleged that she was given options of schools 40km away from her residence after pulling through the site. “What a headache! This is extremely frustrating and they should understand and accept the parents’ anger,” Louise Kinnear thundered.
Reacting to the stressful development also, another parent, Chandré Prince asserted that having a good sleep became difficult since the Grade 8 registration process began. “I live in Illovo [in Johannesburg North] and was given options in Pretoria and in the South. It also listed a girls’ school even though I registered my son.
“Being innovative is great‚ but having a fully functional system is what parents need. They should just scrap this online process and allow us to apply manually. There has been a smooth registration process in other provinces – all done manually,” Prince said.
Another complainant, Dior Kleynhans said the department’s new online registration system impedes parents from choosing a language of preference.
“This system won’t allow me to choose a school which will provide my child with education in their home language‚ only the nearest schools. If I were to select a school I prefer‚ that school is lawfully obligated to accept and fill its classrooms with children from the feeding areas first‚ meaning the chances that my child will go to the school which we intend for her is absolutely minimal,” Kleynhans complained.
Legal Action Against Gauteng Education Department
Meanwhile, the Federation of Governing Bodies of South African Schools (Fedsas) is set to overturn the Gauteng department chosen mode of registration. Speaking on Tuesday, Fedas CEO, Paul Colditz Fedas’s legal team is presently getting their legal papers ready in order to legally reverse the new system.
The federation’s legal papers would also argue that the online-only system discriminates against lower-income parents who cannot afford to access the Internet.
The Gauteng Education Department has apologized to parents about the dissatisfactory delay after the crash.