Violence against teachers must stop - Sadtu

2013-10-28 08:08


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Johannesburg - Violence against teachers must stop, the SA Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) declared on Sunday.

This was one of the resolutions adopted after a meeting of the union's national general council, held between Friday and Sunday in Kempton Park, east of Johannesburg, Sadtu said in a statement.

"The harshest sentence should be meted against any person who attacks teachers and all other education workers at schools," Sadtu said in a statement.

The union called for the creation of a national violence against teachers registry and for research to be conducted at schools where such incidents occurred.

All role players had to take a stand to stop violence against teachers, while parents needed to also take responsibility for the discipline of their children.

Matric exams

Sadtu further called on education departments to respond to reported incidents as soon as possible, provide psychological services to all schools, and for suspension clauses to be reviewed so they were more efficient while a case was being dealt with.

With matric exams set to begin, Sadtu thanked all teachers for the commitment they had shown preparing their pupils.

"We call on society and in particular the parents to support these learners during this time. Let us afford them enough time and space to prepare for these examinations."

The union urged pupils to focus on exam preparations and avoid unnecessary distractions, and called on their members to expose any action which could cast doubt on the exam's credibility.

On bullying, Sadtu believed either seminars or provincial principal conferences be held to develop anti-bullying strategies, and called on the basic education department to develop a comprehensive plan to combat bullying.

Sadtu would create a mechanism through its website so bullying could be reported, and called for harsh sanctions on those who were found to continuously bully others.

Vavi suspension

Amending legislation should also be considered so pupils could be suspended for repeated acts of bullying.

A Congress of SA Trade Unions affiliate, Sadtu denounced other member unions taking Cosatu to court over the suspension of general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi.

In August, Cosatu put Vavi on special leave pending the outcome of a disciplinary hearing, after he admitted to having an affair with a colleague.

In September, Cosatu president Sidumo Dlamini said Vavi did not feature among the reasons given by member unions for the calling of a special congress.

The National Union of Metalworkers of SA [Numsa] has brought a high court application to have Vavi's suspension overturned.

Numsa has also reportedly threatened to break away from Cosatu.

Suspended Sadtu president

Sadtu resolved that all its leaders and members had to respect and allow for Cosatu internal processes to run its course.

It also condemned signs of tribalism accompanying efforts to protect Vavi and rejected the calling of the special congress.

Sadtu president Thobile Ntola was suspended in August, reportedly for giving Vavi a platform to address Sadtu members in the Eastern Cape.

Ntola was also suspended reportedly for commenting in the media that Sadtu's Eastern Cape region had accepted Vavi's apology for the incident.

Regarding Ntola's suspension, Sadtu resolved that all its members and leaders should allow for the union's internal processes to reach their logical conclusion.

Sadtu members and leaders should also refrain from speaking publicly about matters which were likely to bring Sadtu into disrepute.
Read more on:    sadtu  |  num  |  zwelinzima vavi  |  thobile ntola  |  education

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