Ululation and tears of joy were the order of the day when KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala cut the red ribbon to mark the official opening of the state-of-the-art Pholela Special School in Bulwer in KwaZulu-Natal recently.
The school will cater for the needs of 350 learners with intellectual, physical and sensory disabilities.
The school was rebuilt through an investment of R220 million and boasts an administration block, activity block, media centre, computer lab, special needs classrooms and therapy, multi-purpose centres and accommodation facilities for learners and teachers.
The building also includes a consulting dispensary with sickbays, male and female game rooms, kitchen, dining hall and laundry. The external works consists of covered concrete walkways, seating areas and basketball and netball courts.
Premier Zikalala said the school is a milestone achievement for a caring and people-centred government.
“We are unable to contain our joy because today, in word and deed, our government is able to demonstrate that we treasure all our learners equally. Today, we can attest that with dedicated support, all children can learn and reach their full potential.
“We can confidently say that this school is a cornerstone of our vision for an inclusive education and training system. Such a system is geared to actively work to minimise barriers to learning and to meet the needs of all learners,” he said.
The Premier added that the rebuilding of the special school and turning it into a state-of-the-art educational institution in a deep rural area like Bulwer, is part of ensuring that development restores the dignity of people, especially people in rural areas.
“As government, we are supporting rural development and growth through the delivery of critical social infrastructure like schools.”
He said 22 schools in other districts have also been identified for renovations and upgrades. This is to ensure that learners with disabilities receive quality, relevant education and skills in safe environments. SAnews.gov.za