Department of Education South Africa

About  the Department Of Education

The Department of Basic Education was formed when the former National Department of Education was split into two: Department of Basic Education and the Department of Higher Education and Training. The DBE deals with all schools from Grade R to Grade 12, including adult literacy programmes. The aim of the DBE is to develop, maintain and support a South African school education system for the 21st century

Department of Education – ADMISSION OF LEARNERS TO PUBLIC SCHOOLS

As stipulated in the South African Schools Act of 1996, all children between the ages of 7 and 15 are compelled to attend school.  Parents and guardians should ensure that all learners of this age are registered to go to school and that their children attend school regularly.
It is the responsibility of every parent and guardian to ensure that their children are registered for the following year, well before the end of the current school year.  Parents may register children who are supposed to start school next year, near their home or workplace between July and October of each year. It is however important to check the registration deadlines of individual provinces.

The admission age of a learner to a public school to— 
  • Grade R is age four turning five by 30 June in the year of admission;
  • Grade 1 is age five turning six by 30 June in the year of admission.

The principal of the school must give a parent/guardian the admission policy of the school and explain it.  A public school may not administer any test for admission to a school.

Documents that are needed when making an application include the:
  • Birth certificate (Note that baptismal certificates will not be regarded as proof of birth date)
  • Immunisation card; and
  • Transfer card or last school report card for learners who have been to school previously.

Additional documents required if one is not a South African citizen are:

  • Study Permit
  • Temporary or permanent residence permit from the Department of Home Affairs; or
  • Evidence that you have applied for permission to stay in South Africa

Department of Education – Public school or independent school?

You are free to choose whether to register your child at a public school or at an independent school. Public schools are state controlled and independent schools are privately governed. Independent schools must be registered with the Provincial Education Department. Public schools must be established by the MEC for education in the province.
You can check with the Provincial Education Department if the school you wish to enrol your child in is registered before you make any registrations and payments.
Apply to the head of your Provincial Education Department and take the following documents with you:

  • your (parent/s) Identity Document and a certified copy of the ID
  • last copy of school report (if the child was in school before, but if the child is only starting school now you must bring an immunisation card)
  • weekly timetable which includes contact time per day
  • breakdown of terms per year (196 days per year)
  • learning programme
  • certified copy of child’s birth certificate

Timeframes 
It may take up to 30 days for your applications to be processed.
How much does it cost?
The service is free.
Forms to complete
The application forms can be obtained from any Provincial Education Department.

Department of Education – Do you want to make a difference? Then become a teacher.

Teaching is a noble profession that requires passion, commitment, tolerance, perseverance, character and the dedication to make a difference in the lives of a diverse group of young and older children, depending on your choice of phase specialisation. This profession will afford you the opportunity to nurture and mould young and growing minds and to develop a variety of vital lifelong skills in children. Contributing to the academic and social development of children is a fulfilling experience that you should embrace. Go ahead. Make a difference in the lives of children. Choose teaching as a career!

Who qualifies to become a teacher?

Any academically-gifted, young –

  • learners currently in Grade 12;
  • graduates who want to complete a teaching qualification;
  • people who want to make a career change and become teachers; and
  •  unemployed people who want to become teachers.

 

Choose the route you want to follow to qualify as a teacher

You may follow one of two routes in becoming a teacher, namely: a four-year Bachelor of Education degree (B.Ed.); a three-or four-year Bachelor’s degree, followed by a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE).
Once completed, both routes lead to classification as a professionally qualified teacher. Upon qualifying, you will be required to register with the South African Council for Educators (SACE).

Choose the phase (level of schooling) you wish to specialise in

You will need to consider the age range that you would like to teach. The age ranges are clustered into phases. Please note that the age ranges indicated below only serve as a guideline. There will be instances where a slightly younger/older child forms part of a particular phase.
The phase specialisations are as follows:

  • Foundation Phase: (±5 – 9-year-olds): Grades R – 3
  • Intermediate Phase: (±10 – 12-year-olds): Grades 4 – 6
  • Senior Phase: (±13 – 15-year-olds): Grades 7 – 9
  • Further Education and Training (FET) Phase: (±16 – 18-year-olds): Grades 10 – 12

Some higher education institutions (HEIs) allow for a combination of phase specialisation. In these instances, you could specialise in two consecutive phases. For the Intermediate, Senior and FET Phases, you will be given the opportunity to choose the subjects that you wish to specialise in, which include fields in languages, mathematics, the sciences, technology, business and management, and the humanities.
More information on Initial Teacher Education and the DBE’s Funza Lushaka Bursary Scheme is available on the links on the right.

Department of Education – Register as an educator

Are you a qualified teacher and want to teach in South Africa? You must register with the South African Council for Educators (SACE).
Section 21 of the South African Council for Educators Act, 2000 requires that:

  • every educator contemplated by the Act must register with the Council before appointment to a teaching post; and
  • no person may be employed as an educator by an employer unless that person is registered with the Council.

If you have foreign qualifications, they must be evaluated by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) before you register with SACE.
In addition, kindly note that SAQA does not evaluate qualifications for the purpose of employment in specific work areas. In particular, to be employed as teacher in South Africa, the qualifications and academic transcripts have to be submitted to the Department of Basic Education (Section: Educator Qualifications and Programmes) where the qualifications will be evaluated for employment in education. The applicant will be informed in writing of the outcome. Your qualification must be recognised for employment in education before you register with SACE.
If your application is successful, SACE will register and issue you with a registration certificate.
 

What you should do

Complete the application form and submit it to SACE with the following documents:

  • certified copies of your professional diploma(s) and/or degree certificate(s)
  • certified copy of your identity document
  • registration fee

Non-South African citizens must include the following:

  • an evaluation report from SAQA
  • an evaluation report for employment in education from the Department of Basic Education:Educator Qualifications and Programmes section.
  • a work permit stating that they are permitted to teach in South Africa
  • proof of permanent residence and non-South African identity document
  • proof of employment or pending employment by a school in South Africa.

For more information regarding registration, provisional registration, removal from the register and reregistration visit SACE’s website: www.sace.org.za.

Contact The Department Of Education

Addresses

Physical Address
Department of Basic Education
222 Struben Street
Pretoria Central, Pretoria
0001
GPS Coordinates: 25.741790, 28.189212
Directions from OR Tambo International Airport
Directions from Johannesburg
 
Postal Address
Private Bag X895
Pretoria,
0001

Talk to us

Call Centre:   0800 202 933    | Callcentre@dbe.gov.za
Switchboard: 012 357 3000
Email: info@dbe.gov.za
 
Certification: 012 357 4511/3 | Certification@dbe.gov.za
 
Media Queries: media@dbe.gov.za
Website-related queries: webmaster@dbe.gov.za
 
Information Officer: Chris Leukes: