JOHANNESBURG - Schools will reopen on 1 June.
Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga has confirmed Grade 7 and 12 pupils will be the first groups to start learning.
Motshekga says cabinet and the National Coronavirus Command Council have approved the decision. The new school calendar will be gazetted soon.
SA lockdown: Mixed reaction to phased reopening of schools
"We are confident that the reopening of school across provinces will happen as outlined in the protocol that has been developed," the minister said on Tuesday.
"The coronavirus has brought a lot of trauma and anxiety to all of us as a nation and the rest of the world. It has turned our lives upside down and there is a lot of fear about what will happen next."
Before speaking on school readiness, Motshekga condemned the vandalism of 1,577 schools nationwide.
The majority of schools that have been vandalised are located in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
The department named major issues affecting the reopening, including those related to service delivery problems and taking care of pupils with pre-existing conditions.
PPE and other hygienic equipment are reportedly being issued to school staff from 25 May.
Schools providing services to pupils with special needs will be separately managed, considering the needs of the pupils.
The department is working with the Department of Transport to ensure safety protocols are adhered to in school transportation.
Motshekga said the department met with teacher unions and school governing associations together with the principals association to update them on the plans.
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