Corporal punishment school remains open

2014-12-11 16:32

A Mpumalanga private school has won a court battle to remain open until a decision to close it down is reviewed.

The North Gauteng High Court today granted Cefups Academy relief not to close shop on January 1 2015 until the court reviews whether the Mpumalanga Department of Education was correct in deregistering the school for using corporal punishment.

Education MEC Reginah Mhaule decided to shut down Cefups after her department’s investigation task team found evidence that learners were being sjambokked.

The department probed the school after Grade 12 learner Paballo Seane (19) died in August after she was allegedly flogged with a sjambok for failing a test.

The department’s probe did not however link Seane’s death to corporal punishment. Seane was Arts and Culture deputy minister Rejoice Mabudafhasi’s niece.

Provincial education spokesperson Jasper Zwane said the department accepted the court’s decision.

“We were opposed to the idea but we will however abide by the court’s decision. We’re optimistic we will win the case on review,” said Zwane.

The review will be heard in April next year and Cefups may remain open for the rest of 2015 while the case is before the courts.

Cefups Academy president Simon Mkhatshwa told City Press that the department did not give him its investigation report to afford him a chance to respond.

Mpumalanga police spokesperson Brigadier Selvy Mohlala today said the postmortem results on Seanne’s body were not yet released – three months after samples were sent for testing.

The school is believed to have spread rumours that Seanne died after drinking an antiseptic while her friend and a nurse at Nelspruit Medi-Clinic denied this, saying she might have died of a severe beating.

Cefups has been producing excellent results since it opened doors 22 years ago. Among its well-known alumni is Department of Higher Education deputy minister Mduduzi Manana.

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