Parents protest over conditions at school
ANGRY parents protested outside a primary school in Limpopo demanding teachers for their children.
Early yesterday, on the first day back after the winter school holidays, parents gathered at the gate of Luthuli Primary School in Seshego and locked teachers and the principal out. They said they were distressed by the Limpopo education department dragging its feet in employing more teachers to the allegedly short-staffed school.
The parents said they were aggrieved by the fact that their children risked their health by sitting on the floor in their classrooms because of a lack of chairs. They also said there were no books.
By 9am, parents were seen walking their children home, saying it was risky for them to remain at the school while it was clear that schooling would not take place.
Some said they did not know what would follow the protests so they decided to take their children home.
One parent said they had held several meetings with the authorities, which failed to yield positive results.
"We are going to continue with the protests until the department responds positively," she said.
Deputy chairman of the school governing body, Clifford Mohloana, said they were concerned about the health risks posed to children.
"It is winter and our children are subjected to the cold floors. This is not on," Mohloana said yesterday.
He said the chronic shortage of furniture at the school was of great concern and demanded that the education department look into it "as a matter of extreme urgency".
However, Limpopo education department spokesman Pat Kgomo dismissed the allegations and insisted that there were enough teachers at the school.
"The allegations are not true. As far as we are concerned there are enough teachers at that school."
He said they would meet with school authorities today in an attempt to normalise the situation "for proper learning and teaching to take place".
"We will find a way of addressing the shortage of resources," he said. - firstname.lastname@example.org