The Department of Social Development (DSD) has issued the results of its national audit of ECD centres, conducted during 2013, which includes centres with conditional registration as well as unregistered centres.

The audit serves the purpose of providing information on the nature and extent of ECD provisioning, services, resources and infrastructure across all nine provinces: in total 19 971 ECD centres across South Africa were audited.

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The report is structured around various themes, these are:

  • Infrastructure

Key finding: The majority of ECD centres are located either in formal structures built to serve as ECD centres or in houses.

  • Operations

Key finding: Centres appear to have been inspected regularly by the DSD with the majority having been inspected in the last two years.

  • Human Resources

Key finding: General qualifications are lacking for most staff at registered ECD centres with over 35% of principals/matrons and 40% of practitioners having not completed Grade 12.

  • ECD Programmes

Key finding: The audit found mixed results of ECD programming with most centres using their own curricula which likely affect the quality of the programme and the intended skill development.

  • Health and Safety

Key finding: Centres do very well in certain aspects of preparedness, such as having a list of emergency contact details and having a fire extinguisher, but are lacking in other key areas such as having a health and safety officer on site.

  • Nutrition and Food

Key finding: The food served at the centres during the day of the spot check suggests that it is well-balanced.

  • Transportation

Key finding: Few centres have transport policies and less than 10% provide transport to children.

To read the full report click here.

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