'We have exhausted all avenues' - fed up parents shut down overcrowded Joburg school

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Parents have shut down Finetown Secondary School, demanding a new school as they fear for the safety of their children and their teachers.
Parents have shut down Finetown Secondary School, demanding a new school as they fear for the safety of their children and their teachers.
Ntwaagae Seleka

Overcrowding, container classrooms that are falling apart, and even snakes are some of the issues that prompted concerned Finetown Secondary School pupils' parents to shut down the Johannesburg school on Monday.

They say the school is "non-existent" to the provincial education department and refuse to let their children return until Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi sits up and pays attention.

Although the education department has acknowledged that it is aware of the many challenges at the school, it says "their problems are being attended to" and has appealed to parents to allow their children to continue with their schooling.

On Tuesday, pupils could be seen loitering in the streets of Finetown in their school uniforms.

The school was formed in 2010 and accommodated Grades 8 and 9 only. As the number of pupils grew, more classes and grades were added.

The school structure is made of containers which were erected in 2011. There are 63 containers that are used as classrooms.

Parents say many of the classrooms are empty, there is no furniture and pupils are forced to either stand or sit on the floor.

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