Cape schools seek urgent interdict

2012-11-28 19:19
Classroom (Picture: <a href=\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\http://www.shutterstock.com\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\>Shutterstock</a>)

Classroom (Picture: Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - Eighteen schools in the Western Cape are seeking an urgent interdict to prevent the education department from closing their doors at the end of the year.

The schools and the SA Democratic Teachers' Union filed papers for the interim interdict in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday.

The action was directed at provincial Education MEC Donald Grant and his department, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, and Justice Minister Jeff Radebe.

The application seeks to prevent Grant or the department from closing or merging the schools and moving pupils, teachers, and resources.

It also asks for subsidies and salaries to be paid in the interim and that the department be forbidden from interfering in school operations.

The urgent application will probably be heard next Friday.

Grant announced in October that, after careful consideration, 20 schools would be closed.

At the time, he said most were small farm schools in rural areas with low enrolment numbers and multi-grade classes. The rest were in urban areas and were largely plagued by a decline in pupil numbers.

Grant said pupils would be transferred to schools which offered better opportunities. Where necessary and possible, the department would help with school uniforms, transport, and feeding.

If a pupil was moving from a no-school fee school to one which charged fees, the department would cover the fees for 2013.

The department also would cover the difference in cases where fees were more expensive.

Grant said teachers would remain employed and their salaries would not change.

The department originally earmarked 27 schools for possible closure.

Public hearings were held to collect arguments for and against the closures, by school governing bodies, parents, and civil society.

Beauvallon Secondary School principal Henry Hockey, in an affidavit on behalf of all applicants, said the closures were unlawful and unconstitutional.

He said that Grant's reasons for the closures were "irrational".

Teachers had not been consulted about possible changes to their employment, and schools had received either insufficient placement plans or nothing at all, he said.

The schools alleged their electricity was being cut off and their furniture being moved before the closure date of 31 December.

The urgent interdict could put a halt to the process until the schools can apply for a review and setting aside Grant's decision.

Hockey said the department had failed to put a timeous and focused intervention in place for underperforming schools.

He said these schools lacked a holistic approach.

"First, a culture of teaching and learning has to be cultivated; second, the biggest challenge is the safety issue... third, the problem of drugs and gangsterism have never been effectively or adequately addressed by the department," he said in the affidavit.

Grant's spokesperson Bronagh Casey said she could not comment on the legal papers as they were received only on Wednesday morning.

"Therefore, the ministry is currently studying them with a view to taking legal advice. This is an extensive process that requires careful reading and consideration," she said.

"School closures are about creating better opportunities for these learners. It is about what is in our children’s best interests and how we can improve their life chances."

She said district officials were liaising with principals to make sure school inventories were complete. The department would move furniture and other assets only once schools were closed at the end of the term.

- SAPA

Read more on:    jeff radebe  |  donald grant  |  angie motshekga  |  cape town  |  education
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
33 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

ANCYL: Not voting would be blasphemy

Not voting in the forthcoming elections would be blasphemy, the ANCYL says in a statement commemorating the 50th anniversary of struggle icon Nelson Mandela's Rivonia trial speech.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

DSTV Mobile iDrifta

The iDrifta is a plug and play mobile DVB-H receiver...

From R445.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There may be a break through, either through quiet contemplative time to connect to your deep side or forced on you by...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.