Media Release
Minister of Education Donald Grant
Western Cape

15 July, 2012

New mobile school in Grabouw ready for start of third school term.

Statements by Minister Donald Grant, Minister of Education, Western Cape &
Minister Robin Carlisle, Minister of Transport and Public Works, Western Cape

This morning, Provincial Education Minister Donald Grant and Provincial Transport and Public Works Minister Robin Carlisle visited the new mobile school site in Grabouw to inspect the site ahead of the first day of the third school term on Monday.

"I am delighted to confirm that the Western Cape Government has fulfilled its commitment to having a new mobile school constructed and ready for learners from Umyezo Wama Apile Combined School the start of the third school term," said Western Cape Education Minister Donald Grant.

Grant said that the original plan was to ensure that 10 new mobile units would be in place by 16 July 2012 to accommodate the Grade 11 and 12 learners of Umyezo Wama Apile Combined School who had been temporarily accommodated at the Cape Teaching and Leadership Institute.

"The Western Cape Department of Transport and Public Works has exceeded the undertaking by completing 19 mobile classrooms and additional administration units. The additional 9 units were originally to be installed in the coming weeks," he said.

"Given that there are 19 mobiles completed, we are now able to accommodate more of the learners from the Umyezo Wama Apile Combined School site."

Tomorrow, 525 learners from Grades 9-12 will now be accommodated at the new temporary mobile school.

"This will therefore completely relieve any pressure at the Umyezo Wama Apile Combined School. This school will now accommodate 1 330 learners in total," said Grant.

Commenting on the project, Minister Carlisle said, "This project has taken a lot of hard work and dedicated man-hours to complete and we are very pleased with the final product. I am very proud of our Public Works planners, engineers, architects and project managers. From the start in April to the completion in July, it has been a truly outstanding achievement not matched anywhere else in South Africa. Next year, if funds are made available, we will double the number of schools built to 40."

"Together with our WCED counterparts, we have managed to provide the community of Grabouw with a top facility in a short period of time," he said.

Minister Grant said that he would like to "thank the Western Cape Department of Transport and Public Works, the contractors and community members involved and officials of the Western Cape Education Department for ensuring that the new mobile school has been completed in time for tomorrow. "

"It has certainly not been an easy project to complete. Severe weather conditions and rocky terrain have made it difficult to proceed at times. We are therefore grateful and delighted that they were able to meet and exceed the targets they had set."

He also said that he would like to thank the parents, teachers and learners for their patience and support during this period.

"I especially commend the Grade 12 learners and their educators for ensuring that they maximized every day for teaching and learning. Last week I visited Umyezo Wama Apile's "Winter School" programme and I was pleased to see that there was 100% attendance at the school," he said.

"While we celebrate the completion of this new temporary school, we also acknowledge that there is still much to be done."

Grant said that his Department was waiting for the Western Cape Department of Transport and Public Works to give his Department the go-ahead to start planning for the construction of a new brick and mortar school.

"We will continue to ensure that the promises made by this Government - for a new school - will be fulfilled. We will work hard to have a new permanent school completed in Grabouw by 2014," he said.

"In the interim I hope to see these now empty classrooms at this mobile school turn into hubs of stimulation, education and excitement. I wish all the learners that are being placed in this school the best for their future success."

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2012 Western Cape Education Department