Pupil ‘stranded’ after tensions with teacher

2016-02-10 06:00

WHILE some have settled into the routine of bustling traffic to work and or school in the morning, Thembakazi Tshakaza and her son, Lukhanyo Tshakaza, have not.

Pupil Lukhanyo has been suspended by an alleged prejudiced teacher at Eastwood High.

“At first the school did not even want to accept my son because he arrived­ four days after school opened.

“I begged the school to take him because it was not his fault. We were in the Eastern Cape for the holidays and I didn’t have money to return to Kwa-Zulu-Natal - I was waiting to get paid before I could afford to return.”

The school obliged, but a certain teacher did not seem to approve the decision made that allowed Lukhanyo to register for Grade 10. Tshakaza said that two weeks ago, on a Friday, her son was forced to sit in the corridor outside this teacher’s class to supposedly “teach him a lesson”.

Tshakaza appealed to the teacher and the principal, whom she described as being “impartial”, and on Monday Lukhanyo was allowed to return to the class. The following day, however, the teacher suspended Lukhanyo for “disorderly conduct”.

According to Tshakaza, the teacher claims he heard talking in his class and when he asked Lukhanyo who the culprits were, he said he did not know as he was concentrating on his work.

The teacher reportedly deemed this disrespectful and dishonest as the murmurings came from Lukhanyo’s direction, and so suspended him.

Tshakaza alleges that the teacher appears to have rallied other teachers in the case against the pupil, but his maths teacher said he didn’t have a problem with him at all.

Afraid that the teacher might succeed in getting Lukhanyo expelled through some form of “trickery”, Tshakaza requested a transfer letter from the school.

When she was asked the reason for the transfer, she said it was not her first choice because her son had been attending the school for two years, previously­ attending Eastwood Primary­, but she was compelled to do so when her son no longer wanted to return to the school because of the alleged “discrimination” against him by this teacher.

Tshakalaza organised a meeting with a Department of Education official on Monday, but after waiting for an hour for the official to arrive, she phoned to inquire why and discovered that he had forgotten the appointment.

KZN Education spokesperson Sihle Mlotshwa said as the department they will ensure that the pupil is reinstated.

He, however, said the department does not encourage pupils to return to school after reopening as it disturbs teaching and learning plans.

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