Report raises debate

Tebogo Monama

Tebogo Monama

The South African Institute of Race Relations' (SAIRR) report released yesterday - that South Africa has the most dangerous schools in the world - has sparked instant debate.

Education department spokesman Lunga Ngqengelele said: "It is difficult to agree with such a report. Children around the country go to school and come back safely.

"We are not denying that we have a problem, but we are constantly working with provinces about safety measures."

The report indicated that only 23percent of pupils in South Africa felt safe while at school.

SAIRR spokesman Thomas Blaser said according to the Progress in International Reading Literacy study, South African schools were at the "lowest rung" in terms of safety.

"In that study pupils were asked if they felt safe at school and if they had experienced incidents of stealing, bullying, and injury to themselves or to others in the last four weeks.

"On average South Africa's schools ranked more than 20percentage points below the world average of 47 percent of pupils who said they felt a high degree of safety at school."

lThe report says the safest schools are in Norway, Denmark and Sweden - with 70percent of their pupils saying they felt safe at school.