• Daniel Steyn and Mkhuseli Sizani

Video: Cikizwa wants to go to school

The Eastern Cape learner is kept waiting for a place in high school, after five years of treatment for a spinal condition


Cikizwa Ntlali, 18, from Mgojweni Village in rural Eastern Cape, finished grade 7 last year. For years she was unable to attend school as she underwent medical treatment for a spinal condition that left her paralysed.


She is a bright learner, having received a good report card for last year. But although she is now supposed to be in grade 8, there are no suitable high schools to accommodate her in her area. She needs hands-on assistance.


The closest special needs school is in East London, a five-hour drive from the village. A return trip to Elliotdale costs up to R800.


Traditional leader Nosintu Gwebindlala helped Cikizwa attend assessments with the Department of Education’s specialists in Elliotdale, so that she could get onto the waiting list for the school.


Cikizwa has now completed all assessments and, according to Gwebindlala, was hoping to be placed in the school in August. But she is still waiting.