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Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Concern mounts over school disruptions in Eldorado Park, Noordgesig

Lindi Masinga

The Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) said on Tuesday that they had noted with concern, the disruption of learning and teaching affecting schools at Eldorado Park and Noordgesig.

The disruptions in the South of Johannesburg areas occurred on Monday.

“The South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU), Gauteng Central Region had called for a shutdown, against alleged racism in Eldorado Secondary School, in solidarity with about seven educators who were barred by SGB and some community members to report back to school,” the GDE said in a statement

“Fortunately, the strike was called off following an intervention from the SADTU National Office for its members not to participate in the said strike.

However, learning and teaching had already been disrupted.

“We commend the SADTU National leadership for their swift intervention and hereby confirm that learning and teaching will resume without disruption this morning, 29 January 2019.”

The department said it was paramount to note that recovery of any curriculum time lost during disruption of school was cumbersome. Therefore such disruption was to be discouraged.

“All stakeholders in the education sector are encouraged to always engage on all issues and resolve challenges amicably. We implore on the SGB and the Eldorado Park community to accept the seven teachers in order for the necessary integration process into the school to be finalised.”

Meanwhile, MEC Panyaza Lesufi said he was impressed by the Bryanston High School Governing Body’s (SGB) swift action regarding allegations of a sexual assault.

“The SGB suspended the educator pending the finalisation of the alleged learner abuse case, which allegedly took place between 2017 and 2018.”

Lesufi said an investigation by an independent law firm has been finalised. The teacher’s hearing has been scheduled for early February.

“The matter is also under investigation by the South African Police Services. The department has dispatched the psycho-social unit to the school for the necessary support and counselling to all affected learner,” said Lesufi.

In another incident, the department said they were shocked and saddened to learn of a car crash involving pupils from Jabulani Tech Secondary School in Soweto.

The driver of a Subaru allegedly lost control of his vehicle and ploughed into about 20 learners who were walking along the busy road on Monday.

“The learners were taken to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital, Bheki Mlangeni, Koos and Dobsonville Clinics for necessary medical observation and assistance. One learner is critically injured,” said the GDE.

“The department strongly condemns the careless driver for his reckless behaviour in and around a school environment with so many young innocent souls. We are hopeful that law enforcement agencies will investigate this case and bring the perpetrator to book.”

Meanwhile, in the East Rand, the department said there was another break-in at its premises – this time, at the Gauteng East district office in Springs.

The department said the suspects took off with about 29 PC boards and 6 monitors. No shooting or injuries were reported.

“It looks like, we are under siege, how do we explain theft of our equipment at different institutions at this rate; really, it seems we are hit by robbers every second week,” said MEC Lesufi.

“This is unacceptable and concerning. We appeal for patience as there may be service disruption while the police investigate. We call upon members of the public to work with law enforcement agencies and share any valuable information that might assist to apprehend the suspects.”

African News Agency (ANA)

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