Northern Cape schoolkids eat from buckets

2013-04-10 10:32

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Bloemfontein - Child care experts have expressed shock after learning how pupils at a high school in the Northern Cape were forced to eat out of buckets with their hands.

A shortage of bowls at the Boresetse High School in Barkly East apparently led to children being fed from buckets, reported the Diamond Fields Advertiser.

Child welfare organisation Childline visited the school recently and was shocked at these conditions.

Naomi Dube, director of Childline, told how boys carried buckets around and determined how much food the other children could get.

“According to the older learners, this system has been in operation for the past five years already.”

Dube also raised questions about the quality and quantity of the food. She said volunteers prepared the food but the children decided how to distribute it.

“The situation is disturbing and unacceptable. There is also a heavy sewage stench hanging over the area.”

Dube said during their visit there was also evidence of corporal punishment, verbal abuse and bullying.

Childline said the food bucket system was a gross infringement of basic constitutional, human and children rights.

“Several rights, such as the right to be treated with dignity, are clearly absent in this situation. The right to a clean and safe environment is also non-existent,” she said.

The principal apparently “had an attitude” and refused to talk to Childline and the matter was reported to the authorities.

The education department as well as a social worker have said conditions at the school would be investigated.
Read more on:    childline  |  human rights  |  education

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