Pupil allegedly assaulted at school

2018-06-15 06:00
Grade 6 pupil who was allegedly assaulted by a teacher during class.PHOTO: siphelele nketo

Grade 6 pupil who was allegedly assaulted by a teacher during class.PHOTO: siphelele nketo

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A 17-YEAR-OLD grade 6 pupil from Dulati in Umzimkhulu was found to have suffered serious injuries to her left arm after allegedly being assaulted on school premises this week.

According to the pupil she was beaten four times ,on her left hand, by her English teacher from Dulati Combined School in Umzimkhulu.

She said the reason for the brutal beatings was giving the incorrect answer to questions asked by the teacher. She burst into tears during the telling of the story.

“The teacher asked a question and I answered incorrectly. Then the teacher hit me and other pupils four times. My hand then started swelling after the beatings,” said the pupil.

The pupil also said that another teacher from the school had taken her to a clinic in Kokstad where her hand was wrapped in a bandage.

“I struggled to sleep, because of the pain, however I do not want to leave school because I want to be educated like other young people,” she said.

The pupil’s mother, who works as domestic worker in another village in Umzimkhulu, said that she heard about the incident from other people in the community.

“I went to the school on Friday and teachers who were at school confirmed that my child had been beaten but that she will be okay. I was shocked because, to my understanding, corporal punishment in schools was banned a long time ago,” she said.

She wanted the accused teacher to apologise for what he had done to her child.

Department of Education Harry Gwala District Director Sindi Zakuza-Njakazi said nothing had been reported to her. She said the principal must report to the Department of Education circuit office in writing up the incident. The circuit manager will be responsible for doing a preliminary investigation and then write the report to the circuit manager. This report will then be forwarded to the directors.

“The ban on corporal punishment is a policy matter that all of our officials and teachers are aware of. If there is a report of teachers who administer corporal punishment, the department will be taking necessary steps to deal with the matter,” said Zakuza-Njakazi.

She added that she will be following up with the circuit office.

“As a department we condemn the use of corporal punishment on our pupils,” said Zakuza-Njakazi.

Last month, the newly elected structure of the Congress of the South African Student (Cosas) in the Harry Gwala District had called for a total ban of corporal punishment in schools. The organisation said that some schools were still using corporal punishment in the classroom.

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