End of the year message from the KZN MEC for Education, Mr ES Mchunu
15 Dec 2010We’ve come to the end of 2010. One of the most eventful years in the history of South Africa and Africa as a whole. It was a year of goals. As the Department of Education in KwaZulu-Natal, we set ourselves ambitious goals that would see us counted amongst the best achievers. We worked tirelessly towards the realisation of these goals.
As this academic year comes to a close, I wish to whole-heartedly thank all the officials both school and office based of the department for their hard work and dedication beyond the call of duty. Inspite of all the difficulties and challenges, our officials delivered service to the people and children of KwaZulu-Natal.
Serving in the Department of Education has both advantages and disadvantages. One of the disadvantages is that our work is measured throughout the year and on a daily basis.
We are measured in terms of the discipline in schools, the pass rate, the quality of results at the end of each quarter and most importantly, matric results at end of each year. Our work is out there for the world to see, analyse, criticise and express their opinions on what should or shouldn’t be happening.
One of the advantages is that all these criticisms, opinions and analyses give us the opportunity to reflect and do introspection. And above that, it gives us the opportunity to correct those things that we deem to be weaknesses.
It is worth mentioning that 2010 started on a very high note. Of course, we did meet some obstacles but we soon recovered and the commitment was evident in most of our officials. And for this we are grateful.
We now need to gear ourselves up for 2011. We need to look at 2010, retrospectively and ask ourselves, what could we have done differently inorder to achieve even better results. While we bask in the glory of our 2009 improvements, we need to understand that the bar needs to be raised even higher.
It is no secret that our department has major challenges – but we cannot always be seen to be using that as a pretext for underperformance. We need to rise above these challenges. It is important to always remember that the work we do is geared towards ensuring that KwaZulu Natal is literate and sufficiently skilled. Both these are crucial if we are to eradicate poverty from our communities.
Equally important, is the need to raise our level of consciousness and understanding that we are about delivering quality education to the children of this province and by extension, South Africa. Whether you spend most of your days in an air-conditioned office or on the road, a child in a classroom is the reason you are here. The child in a classroom is the only way we can justify our pay cheques at the end of each month. Let us therefore, do this to the best of our abilities.
We are aware of the difficulties some of our officials find themselves operating under, but as the department we will continue ensuring that we create an environment conducive to producing quality results. We count on all our officials to live up to the challenge of delivering quality education.
Despite the hiccups, we remain upbeat that we will produce good results from our Class of 2010 Grade 12 learners. We are working hard to address the challenges we face including teacher capacity, lack of equipment in the classroom for practical subjects, learner pregnancy, substance abuse, poor infrastructure and many others. We will overcome them.
We cannot do it alone, we continue to urge the private sector to come on board. Education stakeholders are important if we are to live up to our people’s expectation to deliver quality education. We wish to thank learners for their hard work and urge them to continue doing always remembering that there’s no easy route to success. We expect a renewed sense of dedication and higher levels of performance from educators. Educators and learners can not do it alone, parents have a major role to play in the education of their children.
Finally, let me take this opportunity to thank all education stakeholders. And to those that will be taking a break during this festive season, let us enjoy ourselves but do it responsibly. Let us give ourselves ample rest so that we start 2011 with a renewed vigor and sense of purpose. We owe it to the people of this province.
Have a Merry Christmas and Prosperous New Year
Source: KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government
Issued by: KwaZulu-Natal Education
15 Dec 2010
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