ATC090630: Report on Budget Vote 13: Education
Report of the Select Committee on Education and Recreation on Budget Vote 13: Education dated 30th June 2009
Having considered Budget Vote 13 of the Department of Education the Committee reports as follows:
On 30 June 2009, the Select Committee on Education and Recreation considered the Budget Vote of the Department of Education as part of conducting parliamentary oversight and ensuring executive accountability.
1.1.1. The main objective of the briefing session was to provide an opportunity for the Department to account on its 2009/10 financial priorities; commitments and strategic plan.
1.1.2. To solicit information related to monitoring and evaluation of Departmental projects and budget allocations.
1.1.3. To report and recommend to the National Council of Provinces to approve the Budget vote of the Department.
2. Overview of the Presentation and consideration of the Budget Vote 13
The Director General, Mr Duncan Hindle presented a contextual overview of the Budget Vote. He indicated that the State of the Nation Address made reference to the Departmental goals for 2009/10, as follows:
· Implementing free education for all through an increased number of the no fee schools.
· Implementation of the Education Laws Amendment Act.
· Expansion of access of Early Childhood Development and the Universalisation of Grade R in the school system.
· Implementation of the National Foundation for Learning (Reading, Writing and Numeracy).
· Access to Bursary Schemes (Fundza, Lushaka, Further Education and Training (FET) Bursary, National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).
· Promoting the teaching and learning of Maths, Science and Technology, including the implementation of e-learning in schools.
· Development of a national plan for the FET sector, including norms and standards for FET colleges.
· Extending the National School Nutrition Programme to poor Secondary Schools.
· Implementation of the Kha Ri Gude Mass Literacy Campaign.
2.1 Continuing approaches
The Director General noted that the Department will continue with the following approach:
2.1.1 Policy review and implementation
2.1.2 Assessing the attainment of learning outcomes
2.1.3 Review and strengthen curriculum implementation
2.1.4 Monitoring learner performance
2.1.5 Conducting a feasibility study in the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to enhance teaching and learning
2.1.6 Building partnerships with Business and Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs).
2.2. Overview of the Allocation Process for Education
The medium allocation is done as follows:
2.2.1. Government allocations are made from the National Revenue Fund (NRF) through the Division of Revenue process.
2.2.2. The NRF is firstly divided between the three spheres of Government namely National, Provincial & Local Governments and within each sphere, funds are allocated to the various Departments.
2.3. Education funding in South Africa
2.3.1 Total education funding amounted to approximately R104,7 billion in 2007/08 and reached approximately R139,8 billion in 2009/10, after effecting the government wide cuts due to the status of the economy.
2.3.2 Since 2007, Education consumed on average 5,5% of GDP and amounted to approximately 19,5% of total Government Funding.
2.3.3 The annual average growth of Education funding from 2007/08 to 2009/10 is approximately 15,5%.
2.3.4 The annual average growth over the 2009 MTEF is approximately 11,4%.
2.3.5 Provincial education is on average 48,9% of total provincial spending.
2.3.6 The biggest expenditure item at provincial level remains compensation of employees at 75,4% of total expenditure (including conditional grants) over the 2009 MTEF (77,8% in the 2007 MTEF).
2.3.7 Conditional grants amount on average to 1,9% of total education funding from 2007/08 to 2009/10 and increases to 2,9% in 2011/12 due to the substantial increase for the National School Nutrition Programme.
2.4. Systems Planning and Monitoring
In terms of planning and monitoring system it was reported that the Department plans to:
2.4.1. Develop national norms and standards for school infrastructure.
2.4.3 Strengthen the Education Management Information System (EMIS) to enhance planning and monitoring and implement the Learner Unit Record Information Training System (LURITS) in provinces.
2.4.4 Analyse and report on education expenditure and investment to promote budgeting.
2.4.5 Ensure effective and efficient labour relations and improved conditions of service through the Occupation Specific Dispensation for teachers.
2.4.6 Analyse and report on the requirements and capacity of human resources.
2.4.7 Develop and monitor an evaluation framework for reporting on the Service Delivery Improvement Plan in the education sector.
2.4.8 Develop and maintain funding norms and standards for all components of the education system.
2.4.9 Implement the National Education Evaluation and Development Unit (NEEDU) initiative in the system.
2.5. Health and HIV Aids
The Department will continue to:
2.5.1. Expand schools that are centres of care and support.
2.5.2 Continue with the Lethimpilo screening campaign.
2.5.3 Plan for screening in Grade 1 in Quintile 1 schools (ears, eyes and teeth).
2.5.4 Strengthen partnerships with the Department of Health and the Department of Social Development.
2.5.5 Review the HIV and AIDS strategy.
2.5.6 Expand the peer education programme.
2.5.7 Continue with Health Mate publication.
2.5.8 Support schools with drug testing.
2.5.9 Strengthen the communications campaign on drug abuse.
Having considered and deliberated on Departmental budget vote 13 the Committee has noted the following:
2.6.1 The Department’s medium term strategy has been aligned to new and established mandates.
2.6.2. That the new mandates have included those emanating from the State of the Nation Address.
2.6.3. The South African Broadcasting Corporation through its education programmes played a huge role in assisting learners who were given a second chance to improve their results.
2.6.4. That more than 700.000 adults were trained through the Khari Gude literacy campaign and that the department is planning to increase the number to 1,000 000 this year.
In order to ensure continuous executive accountability and parliamentary oversight over the Department, the Committee recommends that the Department should:
2.7.1. Develop a plan to bring back learners that have dropped out of school and those who could not be allowed to repeat because of age.
2.7.2. Ensure that the Khari Gude literacy campaign is visible in all provinces.
2.7.3. Brief the committee at a later date on mechanisms in place to respond to the non negotiables as mentioned in the State of the Nation Address by the President of the Republic.
2.7.4. Ensure that school management teams and school governing bodies get proper financial training before the funds get allocated to the schools to avoid mismanagement of funds.
2.7.5. Ensure that language practitioners are properly trained to interpret.
2.7.6. Ensure that the Department addresses the issue of the Occupation Specific Dispensation for teachers and all other outstanding issues to avoid what is currently happening with the Department of Health.
2.7.7. Ensure that the programme of Learner Unit Record Information Training System is speeded up.
2.7.7. The Department to avail itself at a later stage to brief the committee on learner transport policy.
The Committee recommends that Budget Vote 13 be passed.
Report to be considered.
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