An­tiracism lessons in schools?

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - ZI­MASA MATI­WANE

THE ANCYL Moses Mab­hida Re­gion has called on the De­part­ment of Ba­sic Ed­u­ca­tion to launch a full in­ves­ti­ga­tion into “in­sid­i­ous racist ten­den­cies” at for­mer model C schools in the prov­ince.

The league also wants the de­part­ment to in­cor­po­rate anti-racism lessons into the cur­ricu­lum to avoid “un­prece­dented racial wars”.

Speak­ing ahead of their picket out­side Pi­eter­mar­itzburg Girls’ High School to­mor­row, re­gional sec­re­tary, Them­binkosi Zondi said the league be­lieved racism at for­mer white schools was alive and well. The school made head­lines af­ter an al­leged racist in­ci­dent by a pupil oc­curred. The pupil has since been sus­pended.

“We be­lieve this is not an isolated in­ci­dent. Hence we want the De­part­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion to in­ves­ti­gate and root out this evil,” he said.

Zondi said racism was em­bed­ded in “some house­holds” and called on the de­part­ment to ex­er­cise its re­spon­si­bil­ity of ed­u­cat­ing the next gen­er­a­tion to un­learn “toxic be­hav­iour”.

“Chil­dren learn racist at­ti­tudes at home and take them to school. The de­part­ment must in­cor­po­rate anti-racism lessons in the cur­ricu­lum to help pupils who will then even cor­rect their par­ents at home,” he ex­plained.

He said the picket was not tar­get­ing Pi­eter­mar­itzburg Girls’ High School, but the league was go­ing to use the in­ci­dent to high­light racism at all pres­ti­gious schools.

Yes­ter­day, the Young Com­mu­nist League in the Moses Mab­hida re­gion also protested out­side the school. Sec­re­tary Man­disa Shezi said the picket was aimed at rais­ing aware­ness about racism at for­mer white schools.

“We can’t have a sit­u­a­tion in South Africa in 2017 where a white pupil refers to black pupils as k***irs. It’s un­ac­cept­able,” she said.

Mean­while, an on­line pe­ti­tion call­ing for an anti-racism pol­icy to be im­ple­mented at the school has gained trac­tion with over 800 sig­na­tures.

The pe­ti­tion, ad­dressed to the Pi­eter­mar­itzburg Girls’ High School gov­ern­ing body (SGB), was created by 23-year-old Zamaphep­hetwa Nz­i­mande, who ma­tric­u­lated from the school in 2011.

Among the list of de­mands is that the al­leged cul­prit of­fer an un­re­served apol­ogy to pupils and that she be barred from tak­ing on lead­er­ship roles at the school.

Re­fer­ring to black pupils as k***irs. It’s un­ac­cept­able

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