The DA calls on the MEC for Education, Mandla Makupula, to urgently and swiftly deal with cases of sexual misconduct in schools. Those found guilty of preying on vulnerable school girls and boys should face the full might of the law. The Department of Education must show no mercy towards sex pests at schools.
Only two out of six Flagstaff Comprehensive High School teachers accused of making sexual advances towards school girls have been suspended by the Department of Education. According to a response to a parliamentary question set for MEC Mandla Makupula, the two teachers will be fired should they be found guilty of these charges. To view the response, please click here:
However, the Democratic Alliance views with suspicion the claims by the MEC that the four other teachers accused of the same crimes were only accused by the media and not the students.
Media reports clearly state that the students made these accusations during a meeting at the school with parents present. The departmental officials investigating this case need to take these accusations seriously and be thorough in their investigation. Cases of sexual harassment and assault should be handled delicately and fairly as victims can be reluctant to speak up due to fears of victimisation.
The school clerk who allegedly impregnated a Grade 9 learner in 2010 must be removed from the education system and face criminal charges. Tragically this young girl was forced to drop out of school following her pregnancy.
The Department must provide Total Change for all learners in the province by ensuring their safety in schools and removing all obstacles in the school education system that could hinder them from achieving the best possible results. — Jane Cowley MPL, Member of the Education Portfolio Committee.