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    The Free State Department of Police Roads and Transport hosted the Annual Provincial Participatory Educational Techniques (PET) and Road Safety competitions at Bethlehem …… on Saturday 04th August 2018.

    For the past eight years, these projects have been promoting road safety awareness among young people in the province, using an innovative participatory education approach whereby Grade 10 and 11 learners had to identify road safety hazards in their respective communities and to develop research-based solutions. This initiative provides them with an array of opportunities to solve their own community’s road safety challenges such as potholes, roads without signage boards and many others. The Retief High School (Urban Category) and ………School (Rural Category) won at the district level and secured a position to participate at a Provincial level and will represent the Thabo Mofutsanyana District.

    Teams from both schools have identified road safety problems affecting their schools or communities, and have designed solutions to each problem using the four E’s: education, engineering, enforcement and evaluation. The debate competition addressed the underlying issues of road safety in society at large, and gives young people the opportunity to discuss pertinent issues affecting road safety behaviour and attitudes. The method used is a participatory education approach, specifically targeted at high school learners and is conducted in line with the World Style of Debating. With the enlightenment that youth inclusive of children are prone to risks, hence the road safety debate targeted at high school pupils, and who are in the road user category as, pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, passengers and novice drivers. Teams of five learners from Retief High School and …….School will compete for top honours in this year’s event. The five best debaters will proceed to represent the province at the nationals.

    MAP Director of Public Safety, Transport and Protection Services Mabidi Matjele pronounced that the municipality remains committed to working with the provincial Department of Police Roads and Transport Road and other key provincial road safety role players to continue with the course of road safety education and awareness activities within MAP schools to mould young road safety ambassadors for future generations. “We are confident that these projects create opportunities for learners to improve road safety in our communities,” he said.

    By: Malakwane Masilo