Still no lessons at KwaDenge

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

There is still no teaching and learning at KwaDenge Secondary School in Nongoma, northern Zululand.

This follows the closure of the school two months ago after the killing of a teacher, Bhekinkosi Siyaya, who was gunned down inside a school cottage on March 12.

After his death, 17 teachers abandoned classes and submitted letters to the principal, asking for transfers to other schools because they no longer felt safe.

Nothing has been done so far.

According to the principal, Pat Shongwe, the education department has failed to act decisively on their concerns. Yesterday, Shongwe told Sowetan that the school was still "dysfunctional".

"Only 146 out of 821 pupils came today, and the number decreases by the day. But you can't blame them because they would come and do nothing."

Shongwe said the same was happening with teachers as well.

Only six were at school yesterday, but they too were not teaching.

"They come to give me support as well, because I'm also scared. The school is not at all safe. And it was made worse by the strange call I received, where this person threatened that they would return and kill other teachers. No one feels safe at this school," Shongwe said.

He said he had sent many reports to the department, but nothing had been done two months later. The education authorities only responded last week after Sowetan and other media reported on the situation at the school.

"They said they would hire a security company to guard the school and I'm still waiting, and so are the pupils and teachers."

But one teacher said: "For as long as we are guarded by men armed only with knobkerries, I am not going back there."