Umnqophiso Primary School missed two days of learning and teaching as parents lay bare their frustrations over the school not having a principal.
The school has been embroiled in a tussle with the department on the issue for more than a year (“School is leaderless” City Vision 18 February).
On Thursday 18 and Friday 19 February disgruntled parents picketed outside the school premises demanding immediate action from the authorities.
They sang and danced while carrying placards to show their displeasure about the lack of defined leadership at the school.
The school has had a caretaker principal for more than a year and the school governing body (SGB) believes she has failed to improve conditions at the school.
She has been blamed for numerous things, including the deterioration of school conditions. Currently, some of the classes have no windows and the ablution facilities are in appalling state, which they see as being the result of poor management on the acting principal’s part.
Nothandokazi Gosa, a parent, said the issue of the principal pained every parent, and this is why they opted to protest.
“As parents we are unhappy at how things have gone for this school,” she said during the demonstration. “We hear our children are at risk of disease, the consequences of poor conditions in the toilets, no proper Covid-19 kits and things being at a standstill.” Gosa called on the department to intervene urgently in the matter as the school was deteriorating.
Echoing Gosa, another parent, Nomawethu Mhlezeni, said Umnqophiso Primary was dirty, as it had blocked ablution facilities, and some classes had no windows. She said parents decided to picket outside the school to bring attention on the issue to the department. Education spokesperson Bronagh Hammond said the department had arranged for a new caretaker principal, who arrived on Monday morning, “an interim arrangement until the recruitment process is finalised. Teaching and learning continued today (Monday).”