Next week, 15th February, the school year in South Africa starts up again as per the new year calendar set by the Department of Basic Education (DBE). Unfortunately some parents are finding themselves faced with fraudulent registration fees during enrolment.
“It is illegal to demand a registration fee from parents as a prerequisite for school enrolment. The Department is inundated with calls from parents whose children could not be registered in schools due to their inability to pay registration [fees],” the department writes.
Doctor Reginah Mhaule, Deputy Minister for the Department of Basic Education, has also put out a reminder about the issue on Twitter together with a four day countdown to the opening of schools. For some reason the South African government is rather found of public countdowns to education events.
We look forward to welcoming back all our learners, and the resumption of the academic year next Mon, 15 Feb. We trust that all parents are ready, learners have school uniform and stationery ?#SONA2021 #backtoschool @DBE_SA @ElijahMhlanga @GovernmentZA @SAgovnews @MECTateMakgoe pic.twitter.com/V2ztZ7kptJ
— Dr Reginah Mhaule (@ReginahMhaule) February 11, 2021
“We would like to warn all school governing bodies and principals to refrain from this illegal practice as it puts unnecessary pressure on parents. Parents are urged to report these unlawful practices to the nearest district or provincial education department offices,” the DBE notice adds.
The DBE provincial office details can be found here. Each provincial office has its own dedicated website with separate contact details and a Member of the Executive Council (MEC) assigned to it.
For some reason the official department website does not have the district offices listed for all nine provinces. Instead only Eastern Cape, Gauteng, Mpumalanga, North West, Northern Cape and Western Cape are provided. Click on the links of each province to be taken to the district office details.
Unfortunately some of the links provided above are dead or not working despite being the official ones provided by the department. Should this be the case and the office you need to contact is not reachable, the DBE can also be contacted directly at its call centre by phone (0800 202 933) or email (Callcentre@dbe.gov.za).