Principal faces probe as failed pupils promoted


Waghied Misbach

Waghied Misbach

An investigation will be launched into the role of a principal of a Cape Flats school where a number of grade 11 pupils were allegedly promoted to grade 12 without passing.

In one case, one of the grade 11 pupils that was promoted had received zero out of 300 for two subjects, and 49 out of 300 for another subject, but had still been promoted.

West Bank High school principal Douglas Jacobs had agreed to promote 50 grade 11 pupils after being approached by a circuit manager of the Western Cape Education Department.

The circuit manager has subsequently been suspended and an investigation launched into his alleged illegal conduct.

This follows chaos at the school earlier this week when pupils locked the school gates and prevented teachers from entering after learning that they would not be promoted. They have all been told that they have to repeat grade 11.

Gert Witbooi, spokesman for Western Cape MEC for Education, Cameron Dugmore, confirmed yesterday that Jacobs will now form part of the probe into the promotions.

Many of the rest of the pupils promoted had similar results, Witbooi told Sowetan yesterday.

"It's no surprise that there are problems at this school. It is one of many situated in poor African and coloured townships on the Cape Flats," said Witbooi. However, he said that this did not mean that the department would sit back and not do anything.

"Education is exactly what is needed to turn around these communities," he said.