Following the Presidential proclamation, Basic Education Minister, Mrs Angie Motshekga met with Early Childhood Development (ECD) practitioners, officials, parents and role-players on 14 March 2020, at Dr Yusuf Dadoo Primary School in Azaadville and Meyerton Primary School in Meyerton.
The primary objective of the visits was to create a platform for discussions and information sharing about the ECD function shift to the DBE. Minister Motshekga assured all stakeholders present that the Department has no desire to wrest the control of ECDs from community and civil society groups. The Minister said: “Our role as a lead department in the function shift is to conceptualise a fit-for purpose curriculum for a much improved, integrated and re-imagined ECD sector. The function shift presents a unique opportunity to build a comprehensive management system for the ECD sector that will streamline processes and allow for data driven decision making”.
The Minister added that, “the needs of infants and young children span across a wide variety of areas, from health and nutrition, to early learning, responsive caregiving and birth registration. We already have the National Integrated ECD Policy Framework that sets out a clear framework for leadership and coordination of the ECD system, including details of the structures required with clear mandates”.
Minister Motshekga reiterated her statement during the address at the 2020 Basic Education Lekgotla on the role of the DBE on ECDs saying that, “Research concludes that access to ECD for learners improves their learning outcomes and the overall quality of education in general”.