Secondary Schools Improvement Programme (SSIP) was launched at Gauteng on Thursday where the head of Gauteng education declared “The work begins now.”
According to a statement by a Department of Education, the SSIP project offers extra tutorial support “to 73054 Grade 12 learners in 460 Gauteng schools” and will be carried out at matric campus on Saturdays and during school holidays to help the students whose performance were poor.
The SSIP is targeted at the disadvantaged communities and mostly the schools who recorded very low performance in their 2015 NSC examinations. The schools are chosen randomly with regards to their percentage in the exams.
“The SSIP is designed to enhance the Grade 12 learner performance particularly in previously disadvantaged communities‚ especially schools that performed below the provincial average in the 2015 National Senior Certificate (NSC) examinations‚” the statement said.
“Gauteng obtained 84.2% and this percentage is used to determine schools that should participate in the SSIP programme.”
The SSIP will be covering the ten key subjects including: maths‚ maths literacy‚ physical sciences‚ life sciences‚ accounting‚ economics‚ business studies‚ history‚ geography and English (first additional language).
The Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said that “For Gauteng learners‚ whilst the NSC examinations might seem far off‚ the work begins now.“ The MEC added that parents should to encourage‚ motivate and monitor learner attendance of their children to encourage them to face their studies without any distractions.
The SSIP is an encouraging development since the Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan prioritised education and infrastructure investment in his 2016 budget speech and promised that education will be given deserved attention this fiscal year.
“Basic education and early childhood education – Our expenditure on basic education will increase from R204 billion this year, to R254 billion in 2018/19. By 2018, 510 inappropriate and unsafe schools will be rebuilt, 1 120 schools will be supplied with water and 916 schools with electricity.”
To complement the finance Minister’s claims is President Jacob Zuma’s SONA where he said government is investing in education more than any other item in the budget because it remains an apex priority.