The Gauteng Education Department (GDE) on Tuesday said its online learner admissions system had overcome teething problems and was “exceeding expectations”.
The online learner admission had with more than 350 000 applications for school places for next year already processed. “Since the launch of the system last week on the 19 April, over 370 000 applications have been processed exceeding our expected 300 000 in a period of a week,” said Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi.
Applications from Tshwane South lead the way with 49 354 followed by Johannesburg east with 37 720 then Ekurhuleni North with 35 828, Ekurhuleni South with 35 537 and Johannesburg Central has 30 497. Panyaza said the online registration was continuing and would end at midnight on the 1st June 2016.
“Parents who have not yet applied are encouraged to do so before this deadline,” said Panyaza, who again apologised for glitches in the system when the process began.
The education MEC said he was aware some parents who still experience challenges with the system regarding the system providing error message stating that parents’ details have already been loaded on the system, difficulties with addresses of some parents from informal settlements and challenges with Identification Documents of foreign parents.
“We request parents who are still experiencing these challenges to contact our Call Centre on (011) 355 000 or the toll free number 0800 000 789. They can also visit their nearest school or district office for assistance,” said Panyaza.
He said the placement of learners will commence from 24 June until 25 July 2016. “During this period, schools will process learner placement online. Parents will receive an automated SMS indicating offer of placement.”
The GDE said letters will also be sent to parents informing them of successful and unsuccessful applications.
Parents will be given a period of seven days to accept or reject placement offers.
“We are convening a meeting with all principals in the province on the 3rd May 2016 to allow principals to share with us their concerns with the process thus enabling us to better understand challenges within the system,” said Panyaza. “This will ensure that working directly with schools we are better prepared for the placement period of learners and that our objective of ensuring that teaching and learning commence of the first day of the 2017 academic year is realised.”
The MEC also revealed that there were 300 attempts to hack the online application website last week. “All of these attempts have been unsuccessful and this gives us confidence in our system security. The objectives of those behind these attempts remain unknown to us,” said Panyaza