MEC for Education, Panyaza Lesufi, has urged parents of all learners currently in Grade R going to grade 1 and those in grade 7 going to grade 8 to utilise the department’s online platform at www.gdeadmissions.gov.za
In a media statement, released by the department on Tuesday, he said that applications for 2021 academic year will start on Thursday, 25 June 2020 at 8:00 and close on 25 July 2020 at 24:00.
“The application process consists of three steps, to begin the 3- step application process, click on Apply for 2021. Parents must ensure that they complete all details for Step 1, Step 2 and Step 3. Parents will receive an SMS with a Waiting List,” reads the statement.
Lesufi also advised parents to keep their login credentials safe, for easy access during the placement period.
The department further said those who are unable to apply from the comfort of their homes or offices, 34 Decentralised walk-in centres have been identified in different areas where applicants can be assisted.
In addition, all District Offices and Head Office will serve as walk-in centres.
“A detailed list of decentralised walk-in centres with addresses and contact numbers are available on the GDE website and local media”.
“Accordingly, Parents should take comfort that all decentralised walk-in centres have been deep cleaned and sanitised and COVID-19 protocols will be observed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus”.
All required documents must be submitted within seven days of making the application. This year, the Department is also introducing online uploading of documents through the Admissions Online Application System”.
“Parents will, therefore, have a choice to either upload the documents online to ONE school, which means that other schools will manage to access those documents in the system, alternatively parents may submit hard copies of documents to all schools applied to. Parents are encouraged to upload documents using any computer device, including Smart Phones,” said Lesufi.
Documents to accompany grade 1 applications include Parents Identity Document/ Passport, Child’s Birth Certificate, Child’s Clinic Card/ Proof of Immunization, and Proof of Residence.
For grade 8 it includes Parents Identity Document/ Passport, Child’s Birth Certificate, Child’s Latest Report Card, and Proof of Residence.
“In adherence to COVID-19 protocols, we would like to make a humble appeal to parents to stay away from schools at this time as schools cannot assist walk-in applicants due to the high risk of infection and spread of the coronavirus. However, only a few schools with isolated facilities to safely apply social distancing, are specified walk-in centres as per the list of decentralised walk-in centres. All schools will as a safety precaution make provisions for parents to drop documents off at an identified area at the school gate, away from classrooms and office space,” said Lesufi.
Lesufi has also reminded parents that following the publication of the Amendments to the Admissions Regulations and the Feeder Zone Regulations in 2018, new Admissions Criteria was introduced.
He said according to the new admissions criteria, priority is given to applicants who live in the school’s feeder zone, and closest to the school.
He urged parents to use the “Home” option to apply to a school that cover their home address.
The admissions criteria are linked to application options and ranked in the order outlined as follows:
Option 1: Home – The parent’s Home Address is within the Feeder Zone and closest to school.
Option 2: Sibling – The child has a Sibling at the school applied to (Not Siblings in Grade 7 or 12); Previous School – If the previous school is in the area / Feeder Zone of the High School that the parent wants to apply to (Only applicable to applications to Grade 8;
Option 3: Work Address within the Feeder Zone – The parent’s work address is in the feeder zone of the school.
Option 4: Home Address within 30 kms of the school – The parent’s home address is not in the school Feeder Zone, but within 30kms of the school.
Option 5: Home Address is Beyond 30 kms of the school – The parent’s home address is not in the school Feeder Zone, but within 30kms of the school.
“It is paramount to be mindful that the principle of first come, first served will NOT be applied as a rule. There is, therefore, no need for any urgency to apply at 08:00 on 25 June 2020. Instead, parents should apply at their leisure and refrain from rushing to schools or walk-in centres when the system opens”.
“The coronavirus outbreak is the most significant challenge our generation and several prior generations have faced. Its social, political and economic impact grows with each passing day, presenting us with dilemmas that demand solutions”.
“Fortunately, like other challenges before COVID-19, there is no doubt that mankind is more than capable of countering any difficulties it encounters. Persistence and adaptability are among our most identifiable traits, and just as the impact of coronavirus has been evident, so too has our collective will and effort”.
“So far, we are pleased with the success of the online application system and humbled by the overwhelming response by the people of Gauteng. The process has provided several cost-effective solutions. Automating services and moving away from human intervention has freed up manpower from other activities and enables better utilisation of human resources”.
“I urge all parents and guardians to use the online registration process and apply during the specified application period. No late applications will be accommodated”.
“The Admissions Online Application System is the future. Let us all embrace it,” concluded Lesufi.