School safety highlighted

2017-09-13 06:02

The Northern Cape Department of Education has asked parents and the community to support it in its ventures to address the safety of all learners in schools.

Support is needed in home discipline, as the department continues its campaign to prevent bullying in schools.

The request was sent following several incidents of children getting involved in fights or violent activities on and off school premises.

Several schools have issued letters to parents requesting that consistent transport be secured for the learners to protect their children from harm.

The letters state that parents are liable for the safety of children outside school hours.

Parents were warned about leaving children unattended, for example by dropping them off too early before the school gates open and collecting them too late.

“Our schools are meant to be places of safety and solace to ensure an environment conducive to quality learning and teaching,” says Geoffrey van der Merwe, media liaison officer to the MEC.

“The department will have zero tolerance towards violent behaviour or action from learners, and they will be subjected to disciplinary processes.”

The department has vowed to conduct school visits and engagement sessions and to curb isolated incidents of bullying that may occur on or off school premises.

This follows the anti-bullying workshops that were reportedly conduc­ted by the department with the police, at which district officials, educators and learners were trained.

This formed part of the prevention of violence at schools.

At least 20 schools in the Frances Baard District are reported to have formed part of this process, which is part of the National School Safety Framework aimed at combating and reducing violence in schools.

“Every child has a right to basic education and we will not allow any learner to deprive a fellow learner of this right.

“We appeal to learners to remain focused on the task at hand as they approach the examination period and refrain from this inappropriate behaviour.”

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