Par­ents de­fend bully

Teacher-bash­ing pupil sus­pended un­til hear­ing

Sowetan - - Front Page - By Per­tu­nia Mafok­wane

Pupil who as­saulted teacher was pro­voked – fam­ily tells Gaut­eng ed­u­ca­tion MEC Panyaza Le­sufi

The par­ents of the Grade 10 pupil who was caught on cam­era in class throw­ing a book at her teacher be­lieve she was pro­voked.

The video of the in­ci­dent that hap­pened at Three Rivers Sec­ondary School in Vereenig­ing went vi­ral on so­cial me­dia on Friday. It shows the an­gry pupil walk­ing from her desk to the front of the class and throw­ing an ex­er­cise book at her fe­male teacher.

The teacher is then seen walk­ing away while pupils in the class laughed.

Yesterday, Gaut­eng MEC for ed­u­ca­tion Panyaza Le­sufi said the girl’s par­ents were very firm in that their child was also a vic­tim, although they ac­knowl­edged her ac­tions were wrong.

“The par­ents be­lieve their daugh­ter was pro­voked and that she was treated un­fairly.

“They ac­knowl­edge that the learner was wrong to act in the man­ner she did. We re­ally feel the learner needs help and the par­ents have ac­cepted the help,” he said.

Le­sufi has since vis­ited the school to get an up­date. He said the girl had been sus­pended un­til the dis­ci­plinary process was con­cluded.

One of the pupil’s class­mates told Sowe­tan they had a busi­ness test they were ex­pected to write later that day, and that the learner was re­vis­ing for it.

“The teacher was mark­ing our books and asked us not to open our books. We ob­vi­ously did not lis­ten. She then walked to [her] desk [where she was seated with an­other girl].

“The teacher grabbed the other girl’s book but she man­aged to pull it back. She then grabbed [her] book and they pulled it back and forth un­til it was torn. That’s when she got up and threw it at the teacher,” he said.

The pupil said they were shocked by their class­mate’s be­hav­iour. “I was shocked be­cause she is not nor­mally like that. I was play­ing with her ear­lier and she is not like that.”

An­other pupil said she felt the in­ci­dent was bad for the school’s rep­u­ta­tion.

“The in­ci­dent made us look bad. I do not feel good about what hap­pened,” she said.

Some of the par­ents who came to fetch their kids yesterday said the pupil was wrong.

“We do not care what hap­pened. A child is a child and she was wrong.

“They signed a code of con­duct and they must live by it,” one par­ent said.

De­part­ment’s spokesman Steve Mabona said the other learner who also pulled her book from the teacher was also sus­pended.

“The learner who took the video was also sus­pended. The three will be al­lowed to write an as­sess­ment test but will re­main on sus­pen­sion pend­ing the dis­ci­plinary hear­ing,” Mabona said.

Asked about de­vel­op­ments on a case where a video of a pupil as­sault­ing a teacher at Glen Vista Sec­ondary school went vi­ral in 2013, Mabona said the teacher later re­signed.

“The learner and the video taker were ex­pelled. Two years later, the teacher re­signed due to de­pres­sion,” he said.

A child is a child and she was wrong

/TWIT­TER

Gaut­eng ed­u­ca­tion MEC Panyaza Le­sufi with his en­tourage at Three Rivers Sec­ondary School in Vereenig­ing where a pupil was caught on cam­era in class throw­ing an ex­er­cise book at her fe­male teacher.

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