Premier Alan Winde and MEC Debbie Schäfer visit Robotics class in Mitchells Plain

Spine Road High School’s Robotics’ class is equipping learners with skills for the future”

Today, I had the absolute privilege of taking part in a robotics class at Spine Road High School in Mitchells Plain, together with the Provincial Minister of Education, Debbie Schäfer.

The robotics and coding class, which is being incorporated into technology classes and offered as an extra-mural activity, is providing learners with a crucial skillset to work in an increasingly digital economy.

The Western Cape Education Department is starting a robotics and coding pilot program in selected schools. Included in this pilot is Spine Road High School which are already piloting the scratch coding program as part of the Technology subject for Grade 8 and 9 learners.

I want to commend Spine Road High School’s Principal, Mr Fairburn, for his leadership and ensuring that we bring education in the Western Cape into the future.

The robotics and coding classes are providing youth in the Cape Flats with essential skills to seek employment amid the fourth industrial revolution. This will ensure that the Western Cape Government achieves its aims of increasing job opportunities, supporting the economy, and making the province safer for all who live in it.

Robotics started at Spine Road High School in 2018 as an extra-mural activity for learners to increase learners’ skillset and career opportunities. In December 2020, the school was approached by to write a proposal for an upgrade of the existing robotics lab. The upgrade was made in February 2021 and the school launched a state-of-the-art robotics lab in April 2021.

The Provincial Minister of Education, Debbie Schäfer, said: “It was really incredible to see how the teacher is bringing robotics into her technology classes, how much fun it is and how incredibly well it is teaching our learners 21st-century skills not only coding but also things like teamwork, problem-solving, critical thinking skills.”

Minister Schäfer continued: “This is desperately needed for the future where there will be jobs where we don’t even know exist yet. I really think they are doing a fantastic job. They’ve grabbed the opportunity with both hands, and they are doing everything possible to ensure their learners get the most up to date lessons that they can.”

Source: Government of South Africa