"The FF Plus welcomes the decision of the Constitutional Court today in which it was decided that the Head of the Mpumalanga Education Department had acted unlawfully when he forced the High School Ermelo to change its language policy. The decision of the court that the Education Department did not follow the correct procedure by appointing an interim committee to change the language policy from an Afrikaans single medium school to a double medium school, proves that the Education Department had political motives for its actions," Mr. Andrew Gerber, the FF Plus' chief spokesperson on Education says.
The FF Plus is however very disappointed with the interpretation of Judge Dikgang Moseneke, that if the correct procedure is followed, any provincial education department and not a school governing body, can determine a school's language policy. Apart from this, the interpretation of Judge Moseneke means that in practice no Afrikaans school can exist because, according to the judge, the interests of the community rather than the interests of learners of a cultural group within the community should determine a school's language policy.
"We therefore once again urgently call on the Minster of Basic Education to immediately place a moratorium on the changing of schools language policies until her department had comprehensively investigated the situation pertaining to single medium Afrikaans schools in the country. The Minster indicated to the FF Plus that her Department will have completed such an independent investigation by 2010, after she could not provide the FF Plus with reliable figures about the situation of single, double and parallel medium schools in South Africa. To prevent that an incorrect interpretation of the Constitution changes the language policies of all Afrikaans single medium schools, the Minister has to intervene immediately," Mr. Gerber added.