Most complaints about teachers related to corporal punishment - Sace

2015-09-21 21:12

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Johannesburg - Most complaints received by the SA Council for Educators (Sace) against teachers had to do with corporal punishment, the council said on Monday.

"The second category of complaints is for sexual offenses against learners," CEO Raj Brijraj told journalists in Centurion. 

The third category was unprofessional conduct, which included mismanagement, fraud, or violence against other teachers.

In the 2014/15 financial year, Sace received 586 complaints against teachers, compared to 283 the year before. 

Of those complaints, 18 teachers were "definite-period striking offs", which meant they were temporarily suspended pending a hearing.

A total of 10 teachers were struck off the roll indefinitely, meaning they could not teach in South Africa, and other countries, ever again.

Brijraj said while complaints had increased, the number of convictions were actually decreasing.

"It looks like the teaching profession is becoming very much aware that there are certain no-go areas, for example having romantic relationships with learners," he said.

While he did not have the exact figures with him, Brijraj estimated that 80% of teachers indefinitely struck off the teacher roll, was for sexual misconduct. In terms of definite striking off cases, he said about 50% was for corporal punishment.

"We want to send a strong warning to educators that corporal punishment is not acceptable as a way of disciplining learners."

Earlier this month, Eyewitness News reported on two videos that showed a teacher beating students at Randfontein Secondary School, west of Johannesburg.

The Gauteng education department told the broadcaster it would investigate allegations of corporal punishment at the school.  

Read more on:    education  |  corporal punishment

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