Calling all parents: SGB elections are underway
Statement by Minister Debbie Schäfer, Minister of Education Western Cape
The elections for School Governing Bodies are underway in the Western Cape, and I urge all parents to participate. It is extremely important that parents actively participate in their children’s schools, by ensuring that their names are on their school’s voters roll, and that they nominate candidates and vote in the elections.
SGBs represent all sectors of the school community, including parents, educators, non-teaching staff and, in Grades 8 to 12, learners too. All parents and legal guardians with children registered at a school are eligible to vote, and 10% of a school’s parents must vote to achieve quorum. All parents and legal guardians are also able to stand for election, with some exceptions (e.g. if they have been legally declared unsuitable to work with children).
Please use this opportunity to get involved in the running of your child’s school by voting and standing for a position, or voting for someone who you believe best represents the school’s interests.
The South African Schools Act gives governing bodies considerable powers and responsibilities in governing schools, such as the school’s constitution, mission statement and code of conduct, budgeting and financial management, recommending staff appointments, and generally supporting the school and its staff.
While SGB members do not have to have formal qualifications, we are urging parents with skills in bookkeeping, accounting and legal services in particular to consider standing for election. While we value all skills, knowledge of accounting and legal processes is particularly useful, given the kinds of decisions that governing bodies have to make and the responsibilities they are entrusted with.
The voting process is a little different this year, as a result of Covid-19, and each school will advise its parents as to how and on what date the election will take place. After the elections, the WCED will provide governing bodies with comprehensive training and support from officials who specialise in school management and governance.
I thank our outgoing governing bodies for all their hard work and look forward to working with our new governing bodies as we continue to strive for well-managed and well-governed schools providing quality education for all our children.
Spokesperson to Minister Debbie Schäfer
Western Cape Ministry of Education