Claims of racial abuse, inappropriate behaviour levelled at upmarket Cape Town school house mother

2016-11-21 19:10
Wynberg Girls High School

Wynberg Girls High School

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Cape Town - Allegations of racial abuse and inappropriate behaviour by the house mother of a Wynberg Girls' High School hostel are being investigated by the Western Cape education department.

This after pupils in a statement on Monday claimed they were being "violated and broken repeatedly" and called for her immediate removal.

Jessica Shelver, spokesperson for education MEC Debbie Schafer, said officials are investigating the "concerning allegations" as a priority.

"The circuit manager will visit the school [on Monday] afternoon to address the learners, once they have completed their exam," she said.

One student told News24 the majority of incidents involved black pupils.

"We are the majority in this hostel. She is racist and makes us feel like we're inferior," the Grade 11 pupil insisted.

Inappropriate stories

"We have given the school multiple warnings. We have conducted surveys, held meetings, told our parents to intervene but nothing happened. Our conditions are becoming unbearable."

According to the claims, the woman – whose name is known to News24 – called black pupils "bloody kaffirs" and told the girls that they should not be offended because they use the word in reference to each other, which the pupils deny.

They allege the woman told them black pupils will make the hostel unhygienic, and that she overruled permission granted by their parents, implying that they do not have parenting skills.

They further claim that the woman tells them inappropriate stories including tales of having had five abortions, being a former drug addict, worshipping the devil and working for Muammar Gaddafi.

"We want to be left to be children. We are not trained counsellors, these stories are traumatising!" the pupils' statement reads.

They went on to claim the woman touches and kisses them inappropriately, even when they ask her to stop.

The school in a statement said it had requested the Western Cape Education Department to intervene and had forwarded the pupils’ letter to the WCED.

“We believe an independent investigation is however essential in order to protect the integrity of the school, its management and the students. It is a healthy and transparent way to address all concerns,” it reads.

The independent investigation would be established as a matter of urgency, the school said.

“It goes without saying that the school will implement whatever recommendations are made by our circuit manager, the WCED and the independent investigation. We also wish to state unequivocally that learners are never victimized for voicing their concerns and will not be victimized for raising these issues.”

Read more on:    cape town  |  education

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