The Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS) for the Intermediate Phase (grades 4 to 6) and Grade 11 will be introduced in all schools in 2013, and already the system is being prepared for this important change to the curriculum.
The Department of Basic Education (DBE) is currently orientating hundreds of provincial and district subject advisors, for all subjects, on the changes that will be introduced so that implementation of CAPS in schools is strengthened.
Following the introduction of CAPS in the Foundation Phase and Grade 10 this year, preparations are progressing swiftly to ensure that the introduction of the second phase goes smoothly in 2013.
The DBE has gathered subject advisers for the Intermediate Phase from every district across South Africa in Johannesburg for the Orientation Programme. These advisers will then go on to orientate teachers to the content, assessment, teaching methodology, resources and management of classrooms in CAPS in their own districts.
More than 1000 Intermediate Phase subject advisers, from all nine provinces, are being orientated in this process, which is scheduled to last for four weeks. Provinces have been clustered into groupings of three to ensure that the training runs smoothly and so that enough time is spent on practical application of what the changes will mean to teachers in the classroom. The training is held over five days per week.
The DBE has developed a manual and resource pack that is issued to each subject adviser , which is to be used for training the teachers.
“There will be one orientation manual for each subject, which the subject advisers will use for training and pass on to teachers in their districts,” said Ms Jenny Kinnear, Director for Schools Curriculum, General Education and Training.
“We are trying to avoid dilution of the message that needs to go to all teachers on the requirements of CAPS as well as ensure that the same policies and materials are used in schools. There will be no localisation of these manuals.”
“In this way principals and school management teams will receive the same information on CAPS so that the management of CAPS is strengthened too. In fact all stakeholders involved in the training and support of teachers will have the same manual and requirements that will be used to effectively implement CAPS.”
At the same time, DBE FET subject advisors are doing the orientation of their provincial and district subject advisors for all subjects in Grade 11. By the end of their three week orientation, they would have orientated close to 2 100 officials across all provinces.
For the first time, the DBE has experienced high levels of confidence and commitment from provincial and district officials as they prepare to go out and support teachers.
The Department of Basic Education aims to have every Intermediate Phase teacher in the country trained and prepared for the introduction of CAPS before 2013. To ensure that teachers are sufficiently trained, the DBE will be sending out monitoring teams to ensure that training takes place at a district level and inputs from these visits will be used to further strengthen training for the introduction of CAPS in the Senior Phase, which is scheduled for 2014.