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Media Release: Legal Resources Centre secures scholar transport for 91 learners in the Eastern Cape

Press Release: Legal Resources Centre secures scholar transport for 91 learners in the Eastern Cape

Published by The Legal Resources Centre 01 March 2019

 
For Immediate Release: Friday 1 March 2019
 
 
91 learners in the Eastern Cape will soon be receiving scholar transport to assist with getting to school. The development comes after the LRC filed papers in the Grahamstown High Court to compel the Department of Education to comply with its constitutional obligation to provide scholar transport to four schools in the Eastern Cape, where learners were walking long distances to school, often in dangerous conditions.
 
This is the latest of several scholar transport cases brought by Eastern Cape schools and represented by the LRC. Thousands of learners in the Eastern Cape walk a round-trip of 10km or more every school-day. The LRC, acting for the Khula Community Development Project and four schools, was forced to resort to litigation after the Department of Education repeatedly failed to take decisions on the schools’ applications for transport for learners or respond to letters. The LRC sought a two-part order, providing urgent relief to the learners at the four schools, but also seeking systemic relief.
 
The Department acknowledged its constitutional obligations to provide scholar transport to qualifying learners and agreed to urgently provide transport to 91 learners. The Department also argued that it is improving the systemic administration of scholar transport by using the digital database, the South African Schools Administration Management System, to log and process applications. Many schools, however, have encountered difficulties in using the new system, and there is a lack of training. The LRC will therefore continue to pursue its claim for systemic relief.
 
Petros Majola, the Director of the Khula Community Development Project, stated: “Subsidized scholar transport will make a big difference in the lives of these children, who can enjoy their right to education without their parents spending scarce funds to pay for private transport.”
 
ENDS
 
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NOTE: For more information please contact:
  • Cameron McConnachie (LRC attorney): 083 387 8738
  • Petros Majola (Director of Khula Community Development Forum): 083 371 1667
 
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The LRC is an independent, non-profit, public interest law clinic, which uses law as an instrument of justice to provide legal services for the vulnerable.

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