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School CP - March 1996

South African Press Association, 5 March 1996

South African Education Bill released


CAPE TOWN. - A draft education law that will force schools to accept pupils even if they don't pay their fees and threatens jail sentences for teachers who cane pupils was released by the government on Tuesday.

The South African Schools Bill is to replace separate education legislation for whit, and sets national norms for admissions, fees, language and school governance.

If its proposals are implemented, state schools will be prevented from expelling pupils for non-payment of fees or refusing admission "unfairly" on grounds of culture or language.

The Bill also proposes a minimum school-leaving age of 15, and that caning be banned at all schools on penalty of a fine or up to three months in jail.

A working draft of the measure was distributed to Parliament's Education portfolio committee on Tuesday.

Education Minister Sibusiso Bengu said the document and a draft schools finance policy would be gazetted on March 14 for public scrutiny and consultation, and submitted to Cabinet in April.

The measure was a milestone on the road to educational transformation, and that he was "fully committed to a full and fair public airing on these sensitive matters". [...]

blob Follow-up: 30 October 1996 - Assembly passes new schools bill

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