Basic Education Minister, Mrs Angie Motshekga, honoured hard working Districts and schools during the 5th Annual National Education Excellence Awards that took place at the Maslow Time Square in Menlyn Pretoria, Gauteng Province on 06 April 2018, saying: “It gives me immense pleasure to host the Department’s 5th Annual National Education Excellence Awards. I introduced these Awards in 2014 to recognise and celebrate the amazing work done by Districts and schools. When the Awards were initiated during 2014, the focus was only on the work of Districts to complement the National Teaching Awards (NTAs). It was my firm belief at the time, and still is, that our Districts hold the education system together. They are one of the most vital cogs in the education management infrastructure and through them we rise or fall. During 2017, I decided to broaden the lens and include excellence in schools. If Districts hold the system together, schools are where it all happens and where the tyre hits the tar. They are our last line of defence”.
Basic Education Deputy Minister, Mr Enver Surty, congratulated the recipients of the Awards for their outstanding performance, saying: “The Department is proud to celebrate the immense value you add to the Education Sector’s pursuit of quality. It is very important to us that our children receive the education that they deserve so that they can be equipped to play their role in our country’s quest for accelerated economic development. Education is an important lever to breaking the cycle of poverty and inequalities”.
“The Forum of Districts has become an incredible platform to share best practice and strategies that work - a professional learning community that is developing organically. Through this Forum, the Sector has ensured that District Directors, who are at the coal face of education delivery, meet and reflect on critical policy together, share best practice and together plan for the improvement of the delivery of education throughout South Africa. Minister Motshekga, who spearheaded the formation of this Forum, and Deputy Minister Surty attend each of these meetings, engaging and guiding delegates. There is no doubt that this Forum has added immense value to the business of education and has established a working model for a professional community of practice with peers sharing best practice and growing together,” explained Ms Palesa Tyobeka, DDG for Planning and Delivery Oversight.