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The Education Amendment Bill went through the second reading in the National Assembly on Tuesday last week after going through public consultations where citizens gave their insights on the bill.
The purpose of this Bill is to amend the Education Act [Chapter 25:04].
Below are the 8 principal objectives of why the Education Act is being amended.
- The right to basic State-funded education, including adult basic education, in respect of which the State is enjoined to take measures to progressively realize within the limits of the resources available to it (section 75 (1) (a) and (4) of the Constitution);
- The right to further education which the State is enjoined to make progressively available and accessible (section 75 (1)(b) of the Constitution);
- The importance of the best interests of the child (section 19 (1) of the Constitution), a child being a person under the age of 18 years (section 81 (1) of the Constitution);
- The rights of persons with disabilities to be provided with special facilities for their education and to State-funded education and training where necessary (section 83 (e) and (d) of the Constitution);
- The right to human dignity (section 51 of the Constitution);
- The right to freedom from physical or psychological torture or cruel or inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment (section 53 of the Constitution);
- The right to equality and non-discrimination (section 56 of the Constitution);
- The right to language and culture (section 63 of the Constitution) as read with section 6 of the Constitution which prescribes the officially recognized languages.
According to Veritas, the Bill amends various provisions of the Act so that it complies with various provisions of the Constitution.
“It is essential to note that, because some of the rights are subject to the availability to the State of resources necessary to enable the enjoyment of the rights, the amendments have been couched so as to take this into account.”