Teaching is a noble profession that requires passion, commitment, tolerance, perseverance, character and the dedication to make a difference in the lives of a diverse group of young and older children, depending on your choice of phase specialisation. This profession will afford you the opportunity to nurture and mould young and growing minds and to develop a variety of vital lifelong skills in children. Contributing to the academic and social development of children is a fulfilling experience that you should embrace. Go ahead. Make a difference in the lives of children. Choose teaching as a career!
Who qualifies to become a teacher ?
You may follow one of two routes in becoming a teacher, namely: a four-year Bachelor of Education degree (B.Ed.); a three-or four-year Bachelor’s degree, followed by a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE).
Once completed, both routes lead to classification as a professionally qualified teacher. Upon qualifying, you will be required to register with the South African Council for Educators (SACE).
You will need to consider the age range that you would like to teach. The age ranges are clustered into phases. Please note that the age ranges indicated below only serve as a guideline. There will be instances where a slightly younger/older child forms part of a particular phase.
The phase specialisations are as follows:
- Foundation Phase: (±5 – 9-year-olds): Grades R – 3
- Intermediate Phase: (±10 – 12-year-olds): Grades 4 – 6
- Senior Phase: (±13 – 15-year-olds): Grades 7 – 9
- Further Education and Training (FET) Phase: (±16 – 18-year-olds): Grades 10 – 12
Some higher education institutions (HEIs) allow for a combination of phase specialisation. In these instances, you could specialise in two consecutive phases. For the Intermediate, Senior and FET Phases, you will be given the opportunity to choose the subjects that you wish to specialise in, which include fields in languages, mathematics, the sciences, technology, business and management, and the humanities.
Department of Basic Education and the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET)
The responsibility for education in South Africa is shared by the Department of Basic Education and the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET). The DBE deals with all schools from Grade R to Grade 12, and adult literacy programmes, while the DHET deals with universities, and other post-school education and training, as well as coordinating the Human Resource Development Strategy for South Africa (HRDSSA).
The DBE develops, maintains and supports a South African school education system for the 21st century in which all citizens have access to lifelong learning, as well as education and training, which will, in turn, contribute towards improving quality of life and building a peaceful, prosperous and democratic South Africa.