SPIKE Pupils Speak Out: Give us transport

The article you are about to read is part of a weekly series of comment piece written by South African pupils about the problems they encounter in their schools. The series offers pupils a chance to be part of the debate about South Africa’s education system.

There is no free transport for pupils, but there should be.

Firstly, some pupils stay far away from school and they have nowhere to stay close to school so they need free transport to get there.

Some pupils spend money for their transport and their parents would not want to pay for pupils who costs money because, at the end of the year, they do not achieve in their studies. For example, my sister spent lots of money for transport last year and at the end of the year she failed.

Many pupils are afraid of gangsters. For example, in Elwandle Senior Secondary School*, there is forestry nearby and that forest is the place of gangsters. Pupils don’t want to walk past the forest to get to school.

Also they drop out of school early because they do not have money for transport. Like Nomsa* who has no parents and she is now a drug dealer and she influences others in my community to do drugs.

Transport was free in the past because there were fewer pupils. Nowadays there are a lot of pupils in schools. Transport was free in 2008 but now there are about 5 000 pupils in the area and when the free bus comes it can only take about 100 pupils. That means the rest of us must pay for another bus.

The government does not have enough money for all these pupils.

The government must tax those people working in government and big business runners and government must decrease grants so that there will be enough money for school busses.

We pupils can complain to the principal so that even if the principal has no solutions he can tell government about our complaints. Also we can try to achieve in our studies so that government will be interested in our needs.

*Not their real name

The pupils who wrote this are participants in nongovernmental organisation Axium Education’s writing programme. The programme offers reading and writing guidance to pupils in the Eastern Cape’s former Transkei town of Zithulele. The pupils asked to remain anonymous.


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