Guard against school sex predators — victim

2015-06-11 09:20
Graham Bell at 14 years old, the year he alleges to have been sexually molested by a renowned DHS teacher.

Graham Bell at 14 years old, the year he alleges to have been sexually molested by a renowned DHS teacher. (Supplied)

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

Durban - A Durban High School Old Boy who outed an alleged, but now deceased, teacher as a sexual predator has called schools nationwide to follow his alma mater’s lead.

Graham Bell, who first revealed the alleged abuse by teacher Harold “Jiggs” Gray, who died over 20 years ago, on a closed online Old Boys website went public in South African media this week about his ordeal.

But Bell, who has lived in Australia for more than 35 years, said DHS has shown “courage” in implementing a new system to help avert any predatory action by putting the boys before the school’s reputation.

“We’ve already been contacted by Old Boys from a prominent Pietermaritzburg boys school who want to implement similar policies,” said Bell.

On Monday Bell told media in a statement that Gray, a maths teacher and athletics instructor at the school between 1950 and 1980, had sexually assaulted him and that he was not the only one. Bell matriculated in 1964.

Bell said before going public he had received nine affidavits to prove that there was more than one victim.

“Since Monday we have … been notified of possibly another teacher at DHS who taught there in the late 1980s. His modus operandi was to lure the boys to his home after school for extra lessons,” said Bell.

He said he has come under “significant” criticism this week from fellow Old Boys for not coming forward earlier when Gray was alive.

“I bottled this up for 50 years. If anyone had found out back then I might have committed suicide. The school environment was tough. You regularly got canings from any teacher and bullying was rife. Men like Gray were protected and the school’s reputation always came first. It is not easy coming forward like this. Gray was a paedophile and I was one of his victims.”

DHS principal Leon Erasmus and School Governing Body chairperson Justin Paul said the school has revised DHS policy to include providing awareness sessions for pupils, training for staff, all prospective employees and future contractors at DHS to be subject to full criminal checks, a secure tip-off e-mail address and the school will remove any perpetrator’s name from any award or honour offered by the school

Read more on:    durban  |  child abuse  |  education

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X 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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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 network.


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.