Rights group Section27 launched papers today to force Minister of Basic Education Angie Motshekga to comply with an earlier court order to deliver textbooks in Limpopo.
The courts ruled in May that textbooks needed to be delivered by 15 June, but this deadline was later extended to 27 June. Section27 contends that the second deadline was also missed.
A report commissioned by former education director-general Mary Metcalfe indicated that only 15% of books had been delivered to schools by 27 June.
Section27 is also not satisfied with the department's catch-up plan, which was intended to outline ways that schooling time – lost because of non-delivery of textbooks – could be made up.
Human rights lawyer Nikki Stein said in the court documents that delivery of textbooks to grades R, 1, 2, 3 and 10 was still not complete. She also said that Section27 had attempted to avoid legal action but found itself "unable to rely on the minister's undertakings, and having no option but to approach the court for relief".
She said pupils in the foundation phase would not be prepared for the Annual National Assessments and end of year examinations. "They will not have the necessary support materials to prepare for these assessments," she said.
Mark Heywood, spokesperson for Section27, has said from their evaluation the plan proposed by government is "inadequate".
This view is backed up by an affidavit from Bronwen Wilson-Thomson, a lecturer in the curriculum division of the Wits School of Education, who is conducting her doctorate research into the present curriculum.