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Council Resolutions


Council Resolutions Adopted from 27th July 2006 to 4th June 2008

 

1. Resolution on Continuing Professional Development

Noting that:

  • The draft National Framework on Teacher Education presented to a SACE Council workshop for preliminary comment on 27th March and the preceding work of the Ministerial Committee on Teacher Education. 
  • The statutory responsibilities of SACE in respect of the promotion and development of the education and training profession include:
    • 1. researching and developing a professional development policy
    • 2. advising the Minster on the minimum requirements for entry to all the levels of the profession and on the standards of programmes of pre-service and in-service educator education

SACE has an opportunity to express its view to the Minister before gazetting of the NFTE for public comment

And Believing that:

  1. Quality improvements in Education depend primarily on investing in the professional development of educators
  2. It is the responsibility of SACE to develop a culture of CPD
  3. That CPD activities that are relevant and of a high quality will be credible and attractive to educators - will be activities of choice
  4. Educators can be trusted to maintain portfolio records of CPD activities

Therefore Resolves:

To develop a SACE CPD system as a basis for ongoing registration renewal of educators with SACE.  This will be developed and implemented in a phased manner.

The SACE CPD system will:

  1. Require all educators to continually upgrade their professional knowledge
  2. Endorse service providers (e.g. HEI's, NGO"s, PDE's, Unions and Professional Associations and Learning Area Associations) to provide courses and workshops for educators to continue their professional development
  3. Request PDE"s, HEI's, NGO"s and Unions and Professional Associations to:
    1. Firstly register as CPD Service provider
    2. In a subsequent phase of implementation, submit all CPD activities for SACE CPD endorsement
  4. Request educators to accumulate a portfolio of CPD activities from both endorsed service providers and any other CPD activities which the educator wishes to include
  5. Request educators, with the support of Unions and professional associations, to participate in CPD activities from SACE approved service providers that will meet the needs identified by educators through IQMS or other reflective processes
  6. SACE will request its educators to participate in community pastoral citizenship roles for inclusion in individual CPD portfolios
  7. While employers have the responsibilities for the development of their workforce, SACE will manage the CPD system.  SACE and the employers will work in a complementary manner.
  8. The ETDPSETA and the HEQC will continue to quality assure qualifications on the NQF and HEQF, but SACE will endorse service providers (and activities) for the SACE data base

Implementation:

SACE will:

  1. Establish a data base with the following components:
    • A more comprehensive/robust data capacity
    • A data base for Service Provider activities
    • The capacity for developing an educator's point profile
  2. Distribute a list of SACE-endorsed CPD service providers/ activities to its educators from 2007
  3. Request reporting of the usage of the mandatory skills levy of the personnel budget in each province
  4. Request that SACE CPD activities be funded:
    • In the short-term by a special fund for professional development made available by the Ministry in the 2007/8 budget
    • In the medium to long term by a portion of the skills levy of each province which will be provided for:
      • SACE endorsed CPD activities
      • Activities offered by providers outside the department
      • Activities selected voluntarily by educators

2.  Resolution on initial professional educator training

Noting that:

  • A profession has the responsibility to certify the competence of educators as 'fit" for acceptance into the profession

Resolves:

  • To actively engage and support statutory bodies tasked with registering professional qualifications and as SACE to formally approve the professional component of these programmes and qualifications as adequate for registration in the professional body of SACE
  • To actively engage and support the HEQC in its quality assurance of academic professional programmes of which the profession has formally approved and SACE will participate in programme evaluation
  • To mandate PRODCO to develop a SACE mentorship programme for IPET.

3.  TOWARDS A DEFINITION OF THE PROFESSIONAL ROLE OF SACE

DRAFT FOR DISCUSSION

SACE is the statutory Council for Educators in South Africa.  It performs functions similar to those performed by other Professional Councils both in South Africa and Internationally for its educators.

The South African Council for Educators aims to enhance the status of the teaching profession, and to promote the development of educators and their professional conduct.

As a Professional Council, SACE commits itself to performing the following functions on behalf of its educators:

  1. The registration of educators on the basis of criteria determined by the Council
  2. The monitoring and promotion of high standards of competency through IPET and CPD
  3. The promotion of the autonomy and accountability of its educators
  4. The promotion of the standards and code of professional ethics formally adopted by its educators
  5. The provision of support and the requirement that its educators keep abreast of developments in the field and to advance the body of knowledge in the field of education
  6. The formulation and dissemination of critical comment on the professional aspects of the context in which its educators  perform their work including:
    1. The governance and policy framework
    2. The conduct of any body which supports or detracts from the professional status of educators
  7. Educators will continue to pursue their interests as employees in relation to employers in bargaining councils and other for established for this purpose

4.   COUNCIL RESOLUTION ON PLEA BARGAINING

Noting:

  • The fact that this is an accepted practice in South Africa and is legislatively enacted in terms of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977;
  • Council's concern that it will not have a final say in the negotiated agreement between SACE prosecution and the defence;
  • And Council will be acting merely to ratify decisions of the disciplinary panels.

Resolve:

  • That the process of plea bargain be expressly excluded from the SACE Disciplinary Procedures;
  • That an accused rather submit to making an admission whereupon a plea of guilt is drafted which s/he stipulates to.
  • In the interim, the Division advises that we seek further legal opinion to ensure that the matter is dealt with adequately and is within the legal realm accorded to SACE. 

 

5.   COUNCIL RESOLUTION ON THE REGISTRATION OF FOREIGN EDUCATORS

  1. Foreign applicants do not have to submit work permits or proof of employment or pending employment in South Africa.
    Data base to be programmed to identify foreign educators.
  2. Educators must be professionally qualified (except for seconded educators). 
  3. All foreign qualifications to be evaluated by    Department of Education (DoE) or South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) before application for registration.

The following documents should be submitted together with the application form

  • Certified copies of professional qualifications.
  • Certified copy of Passport
  • Proof of legal entry into the country
  • Letter of 'good ethical and professional standing" (Council must verify the authenticity in due course)

Refugees and Asylum seekers will be granted a different dispensation.

Provisional registration will be granted for 12 months.

The registration fee for foreign educators be set at double the amount payable by South African nationals.

 

Resolution of Council meeting 27 July 2006

Registration Division

1.  The Extension of SACE Registration scope to Trainee Teachers

Noting:

  • Teacher trainees are exposed to learners during practice teaching
  • The need to familiarise teacher trainees with Council's expectations 
  • The need to regulate the ethical conduct of teacher trainees

Believing that:

  • SACE should play a role in respect of what goes into IPET programmes
  • SACE should determine who is suitable to teach
  • Information at Council"s disposal will not only benefit Council but also other stakeholders in education 
  • The information obtained could be used for projections and planning purposes

Therefore Resolves that:

  • SACE should establish an Educator in Training category under which trainee teachers will be registered
  • Trainee teachers be accorded provisional registration valid for four (4) calendar years and Council may consider extending the period for validity based on motivations advanced by the applicant
  • SACE should develop a full advocacy programme to share the intentions with identified stakeholders
  • SACE should make submissions to the Minister with a view to amending relevant Acts.

2.  Alleviation of Registration difficulties

Noting :

  • Difficulties encountered by educators in securing their SACE certificates timeously,

Believing:

  • That registration of educators should be smoothly administered,

Resolves:

  • To devise a plan to cope with urgent registration applications, and

Reaffirms:

  • SACE's quest for an all out advocacy campaign to ensure unregistered educators are registered,
    Maintaining contact with Departments and other employers for consolidation of lists of unregistered educators 

3.  Issuing of letters to provisionally registered educators

Noting:

  • That SACE is issuing letters of provisional registration to educators who do not fully meet the criteria for registration

Believing that

  • There needs to be differentiation between educators who meet the criteria and those who fall short of requisite standards 
  • SACE has a duty to uphold the integrity of the profession

Therefore Resolves

  • That SACE should only issues certificates to educators who do meet the minimum criteria for registration 
  • Improved letter with the provisional registration number and conditions applicable to the educator to be issued instead. 

4.  Applicants who do not have certificates/diplomas because of outstanding fees

Noting

  • That some applicants do not have their teaching certificates because of outstanding fees,

Believing:

  • That the issue of outstanding fees must be resolved by the parties concerned

Reaffirms:

  • That SACE continue the practice of issuing such applicants provisional registration.

5.  Extension of the scope of registration to teacher educators

Noting:

  • That the SACE Act is not applicable to teacher educators in HEIs
  • That teacher educators in some higher education institutions are registered with SACE on a voluntary basis

Believing that

  • The teaching profession could benefit immensely from the registration of teacher educators with SACE

Therefore Resolves that

  • Teacher educators in higher education institutions be encouraged to register with SACE
  • SACE should enter into discussions with the HEIs with a view to communicating this idea
  • The necessary legislative amendments be proposed based on research and discussion 

6.  Ethical checks on new educators coming into the profession

Noting:

  • That educators are subjected to limited ethical checks upon registration

Believing:

  • That all prospective educators need to be of good standing

Resolves:

  • To include letters of good standing (not older than six months) as part of the registration requirements

Amendments to existing Registration Resolutions:

A.  Foreign educators who studied in South Africa should submit a letter of good ethical standing from the higher education institution in South Africa, where the professional qualification was acquired.

B.  Foreign educators from countries that do not have Professional Councils should then provide a letter of good  ethical and professional standing from any authority, such as employer or former employer or the last higher education institution and the school where they did teaching practice (for those who have never worked before). 

C.  Unqualified foreign educators could be considered for provisional registration upon recommendation by the employer, and such an educator must provide either proof of registration for professional qualification or proof of expertise/scarce skill (except for seconded educators).

Ethics Division


7.  Sharing of information of educators who breached the SACE Code of Professional Ethics

Noting:

  • That SACE does not publish details of educators found in breach of the Code of Ethics,

Believing:

  • That SACE has a duty to make such details available in the interest of accountability and transparency

Resolves:

  • To publish details of educators found guilty of breaches of the Code of Ethics

8.  Plea Bargaining

Noting:

  • That cases serving before SACE differ markedly in the degree of seriousness of the offence and some cases could be open for plea bargaining,

Believing:

  • That the plea bargaining facility is humane, reasonable and practical in appropriate circumstances,

Resolves:

  • To administer the plea bargain system as described (see Annexure presented to Council)

Professional Development Division


9.  Professional Qualifications Framework and the Role of SACE

Noting that:

  • It is the statutory responsibility of SACE to determine minimum criteria for registration as a educator in South Africa.  Act 31 of 2000, the South African Council for Educators Act, requires that SACE advise the Minister on matters relating to the education and training of educators, including the minimum requirements for entry to all levels of the profession and the standards of programmes of pre-service and in-service teacher education
  • The practice of other professional councils in South Africa and education professional councils internationally is to certify the professional competence of members after completion of academic professional programmes of which the profession has formally approved in order to ensure that those entering the profession have been suitably prepared to practise
  • The various responsibilities provided in law for the establishment of qualification frameworks

Believing that:

  • Educators, through their professional council, must uphold and promote the highest standards of professional practice in South Africa
  • SACE must be the final arbiter of professional standards required for registration to practise as an educator

Therefore resolves:

  • To publish, after the first council meeting in 2007, standardising descriptors of educator competence that will guide SACE"s recognition of educator qualification for professional registration.  Persons with new qualifications which are not compliant with these descriptors will not be registered as educators in South Africa.
  • A draft progress report will be tabled at the next Council meeting.
  • The process will be facilitated by PRODCO.
  • During the process, all relevant stakeholders will be engaged with.

Recommendations from the Registration Workshop (held on 5-6 May 2008) refined by EXCO and adopted by Council on 4 June 2008

Preamble:

1. Who must register with SACE?

Every person employed, as recognized by SACE Act.
Therapists and FET skilled educators (and technical college educators) should be registered provisionally, without expiry date as per subject and/or institution. The principal must confirm employment in writing. They will be awarded special certificates.

2. Foreign applicants

  • Application forms must be accompanied by offer of employment.
  • Applications must be accompanied by notarized academic transcripts and certificates, where authenticity of documents is doubtful.
  • Unqualified foreign educators should be treated the same way as SA educators should be accorded provisional status), i.e. to teach in South Africa, as per learning area and institution bound.
  • Letter of good ethical and professional standing will only be issued after a period of 12 months service in South Africa.
  • Special application forms will be issued to foreign applicants.

3. The office should gather data regarding unregistered educators, including SGB posts. SACE should engage in advocacy - to get those unregistered educators to be registered.  

4. Registration turnaround time for South African educators - status quo remains (6  weeks) but urgent applications should not be turned down.

5. Registration turnaround time for foreign educators is three months.

6. Applicants with previous /pending disciplinary/criminal /civil cases and/or currently serving a prison term to be subjected to a fit and proper hearing by ethics division.

7. For un/under qualified educators, the employer must recommend to SACE to accord provisional registration to the applicant by completing the SACE pro-forma letter. The principal must sign such confirmation. The registration will be renewable annually. 

Council Resolution on the Registration of Foreign Educators

1.   Foreign applicants do not have to submit work permits

2.   Database to be programmed to identify foreign educators.

  • Application forms must be accompanied by offer of employment.
  • Applications must be accompanied by notarized academic transcripts and certificates where authenticity of documents is doubtful.
  • Unqualified foreign educators should be treated the same way as SA educators (should be accorded provisional status), i.e. to teach in South Africa, as per learning area and institution bound.
  • Letter of good ethical and professional standing will only be issued after a period of 12 months service in South Africa.
  • Special application forms will be issued to foreign applicants.

3.   All foreign qualifications to be evaluated by the Department of Education (DoE) or South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) before application for registration.

The following documents should be submitted together with the application form:

  • Certified copies of professional qualifications
  • Certified copy of Passport
  • Proof of legal entry into the country
  • Letter of 'good ethical and professional standing’ (Council must verify the authenticity in due course)

4.  Refugees and Asylum seekers will be granted a different dispensation on submission of relevant documentation.

  • Refugees do not require offer of employment and letters of good standing.

 

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