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No holidays on 29 and 30 April

by Gabi Khumalo
on 21 Apr 2008
BuaNews Online
BuaNews Online

Most provinces have decided to keep schools open on 29 and 30 April despite the week falling in between two long weekends.

The 28 May is a public holiday following Freedom Day on Sunday, while 1 May is Workers Day. The Friday was declared a public holiday because two public holidays fell on the same day this year.

Western Cape Education MEC Cameron Dugmore said the department has received a number of applications from schools to close on 29 and 30 April, but the department had turned them down.

"I support and endorse this, those two days will be normal working days for schools in the Western Cape Province and for officials of the Western Cape Education Department," said Mr Dugmore.

He said that the national Minister of Education, Naledi Pandor approved the school calendar more than a year in advance after thorough consultation with all interested parties and can make allowances in certain circumstances.

In the light of a lengthy Easter recess, the department only has a limited number of schooldays available to complete the curriculum.

It would not make sense to declare another school holiday at this stage, he said.

Gauteng Education spokesperson Panyaza Lesufi told BuaNews on Monday that the two days would be normal working days and all schools would be open.

Department spokesperson in Limpopo Province, Solly Magalesa said the department has not taken any decision regarding the issue.

"The department has not taken any decision at the moment, it will depend on the districts and how far they are with the syllabus," said Mr Magalesa.

National Education spokesperson, Lunga Ngqengelele said the decision will depend on each province.

"Each province will decide whether to open or not," said Mr Ngqengelele.

In terms of the law, employees are entitled to a set amount of public holidays each year, but because Human Rights Day fell on the same day as Good Friday this year they have missed out on a holiday.

Cabinet endorsed the proposal by trade unions to declare 2 May a public holiday. - BuaNews

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