Union Calls For Increased Funding For Education

One of South Africa’s largest trade unions believes that the matric pass rate achieved by public schools as opposed to private schools reflects the inequality in the education system. They are calling for increased funding to improve education in the public sector.


Union Calls For Increased Funding For Education

The matric class of 2022 achieved an 80,1% pass rate in the National Senior Certificate (NSC) exams. Around 26.7% of learners who obtained their NSC qualification in 2022 passed with a bachelor’s pass.

Independent Examinations Board (IEB) matric candidates have obtained a 98.42% pass rate with 89.32% achieving bachelor’s passes.


The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) is calling for an increase in the funding allocated to education from the National Treasury. The union said that disparities between the private education sector and the public education sector could have lasting consequences for learners who attend public school.

In 2022, the Department of Basic Education (DBE) received a budget allocation of R29.6 billion. Despite the education, budget is the second highest for a government department, one of South Africa’s largest trade unions is calling for greater investment in basic education.

COSATU argues that learners that attend private schools are provided with better options in relation to university acceptance and access to courses. This is as learners whose matric exams were administered by the IEB receive their results before learners who attend public schools.


The union is calling for increased funding for DBE and the Department of Higher Education and Training in the upcoming financial year. This increased funding may ensure learners are given the best learning experience and education.

Increased funding for schools could result in the employment of more teachers resulting in a reduction in class sizes which is associated with positive learning outcomes. The union adds that an increase in funding will also enable the DBE to address infrastructure backlogs.

”Education remains the backbone in the development of our country and a major practical weapon in addressing the social inequalities, unemployment, and the elimination of poverty”.

COSATU spokesperson Sizwe Pamla says they plan to ensure these issues are heard by all relevant stakeholders in the coming months so that their calls are reflected in the upcoming State of Nation Address and the Budget Speech.

Pamla spoke about the role of unions in ensuring that when funds are allocated, they are used appropriately.


They concluded “Where resources are not spent they speak out because in some instances resources are allocated but you find that those who manage these resources either underspend or they spend them in such a reckless way that they do not necessarily deliver the desired outcome”

Pamla said the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) has been effective in holding power to account in the education sector.


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