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'Racist' school head put off

By unknown | Jan 28, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Sne Masuku

Sne Masuku

Learning is expected to return to normal at George Cato Primary School, outside Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal, when a new acting principal takes over today.

This follows the suspension of the school's principal, Lyn Phillips, over allegations of racism.

Sourceswithin the schooltold Sowetan that the principal and her head of department were suspended. They said an acting principal would take over the running of the school from today until an internal probe was concluded.

The provincial department of education was, however, unable to specify the names and positions of those suspended. But it confirmed that some staff members had been suspended, pending the outcome of the investigations.

Education spokesman Ntokozo Maphisa said an outsider, who was not an interested party, would be brought in to manage the school.

Meanwhile, teachers at the school said they were relieved that the principal had been suspended. But they said they would be happy if a black person took over as acting principal.

"We are calling on the department to intervene further in this matter by restructuring the management to include black teachers in the management team," said one of the teachers.

The school came to a standstill for two days last week when black teachers downed tools on Wednesday after accusing their white principal of racism. This forced the department to close the school gates.

The black teachers accused the suspended principal of being a racist, claiming she called them "baboons" and of treated them like animals.


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