ICYMI: More schools now include agricultural subjects

As part of a drive to implement agricultural studies as subjects into more South African schools, Pelican Park High School in Grassy Park, Cape Town, will now be presenting subjects like agri management science and agri technology to its learners

Agricultural subjects: Principal Cader Tregonning and Dr Ivan Meyer addressing learners at Pelican Park High School in Grassy Park, Cape Town. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

Principal Cader Tregonning and Dr Ivan Meyer addressing learners at Pelican Park High School in Grassy Park, Cape Town. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

Across the country, the department of basic education is on a mission to implement agricultural studies and aquaponics into schools in Mzansi. Pelican Park High School in the Western Cape is the latest school to include agricultural subjects as part of the school’s curriculum.

The school, in the Cape Town area of Grassy Park, will now include agricultural subjects such as agricultural management science and agricultural technology in its curriculum.

The province’s minister for agriculture, Dr Ivan Meyer, has welcomed the decision and said the move will make the agriculture sector more accessible to the youth.

“The decision by the Western Cape education department to further expand the number of agricultural subjects at Pelican Park High School is welcomed… I am very encouraged by the principal’s leadership and the enthusiasm with which the educators and learners have embarked on their agricultural education journey,” Meyer said.

According to Meyer the school is ideally located close to the Philippi Horticultural Area, often described as the “breadbasket” of the Metro.

“The decision creates more training opportunities in the agricultural sector and makes the sector more accessible to the youth,” he said.

Dr Ivan Meyer, Western Cape agriculture minister, inside the seedling nursery at Pelican Park High School. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

Speaking to learners and educators at the school on the first day of the 2022 academic year, Meyer highlighted that agriculture contributes to creating jobs and the economy of the Western Cape.

Meyer pointed out, “The agriculture sector is a star performer in our economy. Therefore, it makes sense for our youth to equip themselves with the requisite skills to participate in a sector that is not only doing well but also plays a vital role in securing food security.”

The Western Cape accounts for 53% of South Africa’s primary agricultural exports and contributes 11% to the Western Cape’s GDP and 17% to the total number of jobs created in our Province.

Structured education, training and research, Meyer said, is one of his ministerial priorities.

“I have therefore been advocating for the establishment of more agricultural schools and the introduction of agricultural subjects at existing schools in the Western Cape.”

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