SADTU Media Statement on Loadshedding

10 March 2022

SADTU bemoans loadshedding  

The South African Democratic Teachers' Union (SADTU) is gravely concerned about the negative effects of load-shedding on education. This intermittent supply of electricity is disrupting learning and teaching.

Education in South Africa was dealt a blow by the Covid 19 pandemic and as it subsides, we are now confronted with load-shedding. Learners need to study and perform school tasks necessary for curriculum coverage at home because of an assessment centric curriculum we have. Learners are affected psychologically as they cannot perform these tasks at home due to lockdown. We are disappointed that instead of improving, the energy situation, is seemingly regressing.

During the day, not all classrooms are set up to allow adequate natural light and not all have alternative electricity generation capacity. The delivery of technical and digital platform-based subjects that depend on electricity availability for experiments is hampered. The move towards a digital era in our schools is derailed and those that have begun to embrace it using electronic smart boards are disrupted.

Boarding schools that have no generators cannot feed nor teach the learners. At night, schools become more vulnerable to vandalism and theft. Loadshading is causing a safety and health hazard to schools that use electricity generated water pumps.
Commuting to and from schools is a challenge leading to more delays during traffic peaks and then results in late coming. We therefore appeal to school management teams to exercise understanding to both leaners and teachers when they do not arrive at school on time.

SADTU therefore call on circuits, districts, and provincial departments to assist school management teams to plan for alternative sources of energy.

We call on the Department of Basic Education to produce a strategy and plan to introduce and install green energy alternative supplies like solar energy to all schools. This, we believe will not only benefit our education but contribute towards alleviating unemployment as a job creation strategy towards just transition to a greener future.
SOEs like Eskom need to be aided to perform optimally and therefore there should be consequence management for those failing to deliver. It is high time we start seeing those collapsing SOE's called to account as this may serve as a deterrent.

ISSUED BY: SADTU Secretariat

CONTACT: General Secretary, Mugwena Maluleke: 082 783 2968
Deputy General Secretary, Nkosana Dolopi: 082 709 5651
Media Officer, Nomusa Cembi: 082 719 5157