Learners protest, set fire to principal’s office

2011-01-11 14:56

There was a police presence at the Kgoroyathuto High School in Botshabelo today after pupils who had failed their exams protested, set fire to the principal’s office and demanded to be moved to the next grade.

The police’s Constable Consolation Mokoale said the situation was “back to normal”, but police were at the school as they believed that given the chance, children would continue vandalising it.

Grade 10 and 11 students protested yesterday because they wanted to be promoted to a higher grade.

Police were called at 9am after reports of pupils breaking classroom windows, fighting, barricading roads and throwing stones.

“When police arrived stones were thrown at vehicles and one police van was damaged. Police managed to control the situation by firing rubber bullets at the crowd.”

No one was injured and the crowd dispersed. Police were called back to the school at 9.30pm when the principal’s office was set alight, apparently by a petrol bomb.

The school had allegedly offered children the opportunity to come in individually with their examination papers to allow teachers to review them. Some took advantage of this and others did not, Mokoale said.

A case of public violence and one of arson was opened.

Police believed they would make arrests soon.

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