Coloured area schools ‘neglected’: Daily Dispatch

THE DA has accused the Eastern Cape education department of neglecting schools in coloured areas.

DA MPL Edmund van Vuuren made the remarks after visiting Luis Rex Primary in Queenstown last week.

Van Vuuren said the situation at the school was bad.

“I do not want to get into politics, but I think the department is neglecting schools in coloured areas. I think there is something sinister going on.”

Attempts to get comment from Eastern Cape education spokesman Malibongwe Mtima were unsuccessful at the time of writing yesterday.

Van Vuuren said the school, made of prefabricated material, had been on a priority list of schools to be fixed in the district for many years, but nothing had happened.

He said it had become common for teachers and pupils to step through wooden floors and for pieces of ceiling to fall on their heads during class.

In a further blow, the school is set to lose five teachers this year, despite catering consistently for 1 400 pupils.

Edmond Hartnick, the building and grounds portfolio chairman at the school, said the dilapidated classrooms posed a danger to staff and pupils.

Hartnick said the buildings were more than 80 years old. He said officials from the provincial and national education offices visited in 2013 and promised that they would return to refurbish it.

Instead, the provincial education department had reduced the number of teachers this year.

Hartnick said no explanations were given and they did not know when the vacancies would be filled. — msindisif@dispatch.