Judgment on Equal Access to Textbooks

Wednesday, 2 December, 2015

Summary from the judgment: Constitutional law – right to education in terms of s 29(1)(a) of the Constitution – content of right discussed – Department of Basic Education adopting clear national policy that each learner must be provided with a textbook for each subject before commencement of the academic year – Department failing to do so in respect of some learners in Limpopo – held that the Department had given content to s 29(1)(a) – right immediately realisable – held accordingly that the Department‟s failure to provide textbooks to each learner infringes their right to basic education – held further that failure to provide textbooks to a small number of students in Limpopo amounted to unfair discrimination against them – order of court a quo requiring Department to deliver textbooks and report to respondents accordingly confirmed and appeal dismissed – in addition, cross-appeal upheld and declaration made that Department in breach of previous court orders concerning delivery of textbooks.

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