Early Childhood Development (ECD) Migrates to Basic Education
During the 2019 State Of the Nation Address (Sona) the President made known his plans for a number of programmes in government. One of those programmes, in the education sector, will soon be implemented.
In the past years, Early Childhood Development (ECD) had been the responsibility of the Department of Social Development.
In the 2019 Sona, the President had announced that ECD’s functions will migrate from the Department of Social Development (DSD) to the Department of Basic Education (DBE).
In a statement, DBE spokesperson, Elijah Mhlanga wrote:
The Education Department has confirmed that this change will commence as of 1 April 2022.
This will be better explained by the department’s ECD and 2nd Chance Roadshow to Kimberly, Northern Cape’s Bontjieskraal Conference Centre on 15 March 2022.
In the South African context, the current ECD programmes were introduced at a time in our history when the high infant mortality rate had led to the creation of parent and community initiatives such as the South African Council for Child and Family Welfare, whose aim was to provide support, care and education outside home.
This change will better prepare children who are yet to enter Grade 1, as this also means that the curricula of pre-Grade will be aligned with that of the Basic Education foundation phase.
In this Roadshow, the department aims to also share information on programmes such as Read to Lead to not only create awareness in the community but also encourage developing and maintaining a reading culture.
According to nationally representative surveys, 58% of South African children do not learn to read fluently and with comprehension in any language by the end of Grade four.
With the department pushing for programmes such as Read to Lead, it will not only improve the numbers but rather will also teach these learners that struggle to read with comprehension to read confidently.
Learners will need equipped teachers in order for them to thrive, hence the department will also be sharing with youth that is interested in becoming educators how to register for the Funza Lushaka Bursary.