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Online school applications in Gauteng, a disaster

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School registrations in Gauteng for 2017 can be summed up with many choice words, “disaster” is probably the most family friendly to use in this instance.  Our government got clever, not really their strong suite.  They decided that in Gauteng only online school registrations will be accepted.  In theory this has potential.  In reality it falls way short of the mark, and the mark might as well be on Mars (sorry to pinch your words Alice Cooper). 

On Monday 11 April, online registrations opened.  I tried to register from 7.30 am to 11:00 pm with the system being available intermittently for brief periods until it crashed.  We were then informed that the online application system would be available from 8:00 AM today, 19 April.  Not feeling a warm sense of security about this, many parents chose to also fill in manual applications at the school together with proof that we had tried online.  While I stood in line at school, my husband continued trying online. 

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About 10 minutes after online applications opened at 8:00 am today, the system again crashed (you’re not surprised are you?)  An ‘oops sorry’ message asked applicants to try again at 10:00 am, it’s 12:22 now and the same message appears.  However, as some parents have commented, they don’t say which century or time zone is being referred to. 

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While attempting to register our daughter this morning before the system crashed, my husband managed to get to the point where schools are selected.  She has a sibling in our school of choice and we live in Boksburg on the East Rand but the two options given were for schools in the south of Johannesburg.  He could not proceed to apply because no Boksburg schools were offered let alone the school where our daughter is currently in Grade R and her brother is in Grade 4. 

I have handed in a manual application at our school.  At this point I don’t know if it’s worth the paper that it’s written on. 

Please comment below to share your experiences with the new system.  Is there anyone out there who has registered successfully online? 

UPDATE : At 7 pm on 19/4 at long last I managed to complete the application process online and now have a waiting list number.  Other parents who I know are still struggling with error messages.

It has now been announced that the system will revert back to A and B lists according to how close you are to the school, instead of the first come, first served system.

8 comments

  1. The schools in the South of Jo’burg were the only options when they went live on Monday, the 11th. Multiple people reported this. After 8 days, this report was clearly ignored.

  2. This is very frustrating. We are waiting (impatiently) for the announcement at 2.

    When I tried this morning, before the system crashed, it also only gave me schools in the South of Johannesburg, nowhere remotely close to where we live. When we put our school of choice, we get HIGH SCHOOLS as our second and third choices for our grade 1 application!

  3. I think we have forgotten that maybe some people can’t read. I never get a reply to any of the letters I send to government offices. Poor girl, you must be frustrated out of your mind. Perhaps we should ALL home school our kids, then there won’t be any necessity for teachers or books that do not arrive until half way through the year. Just a thought.!

  4. In theory, it is a brilliant idea, especially after the mass hysteria last year that had people standing in queues throughout the night or for days on end just to get a form.
    I have to wonder, though, even if everything worked online as it should and if the schools don’t accept paper submissions, what happens to all the children of domestic workers, gardeners, cleaners; drivers or any parent that does not have access to or any knowledge of the workings of the internet or computers. If they don’t have employers willing to spend the time to assist them with these registrations are the schools going to assist these parents with online registrations.
    I guess we can only hope that one day all these frustrations are ironed out and things work as they should.
    As a side note, I cannot believe Acacia will be going to school next year – they grow up so quickly 😊

    • I have also been thinking along the same lines. Apparently some schools had computers set up for teachers to assist parents to register online but this was not broadly advertised so very few knew that this option exists.

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