Sign language bid opposed

LEGAL ROUTE: Westville Boys High pupil Kyle Springate. © Unknown.
LEGAL ROUTE: Westville Boys High pupil Kyle Springate. © Unknown.

THE department of education will oppose a court application by a KwaZulu-Natal deaf matric pupil who wants sign language declared an official language at schools, the Pietermaritzburg high court heard yesterday.

THE department of education will oppose a court application by a KwaZulu-Natal deaf matric pupil who wants sign language declared an official language at schools, the Pietermaritzburg high court heard yesterday.

Westville Boys High school pupil Kyle Springate has taken the department of education to court in an attempt to have sign language made official in schools. Springate filed his papers in June with the help of the Legal Resource Centre.

The matter was adjourned yesterday to August 19.

The department's legal team told the court it would oppose Springate's application. The department was expected to file its own papers yesterday after it failed to meet the July 5 deadline. The courtroom was filled with members of the KwaZulu-Natal Blind and Deaf Society, Springate's classmates and family friends.

"We as the KwaZulu-Natal Blind and Deaf Society fully support Kyle Springate in his attempts to have sign language declared an official language in schools," said the society's CEO Jace Nair.

Earlier, deaf and blind people picketed outside the court in support of Springate, who was accompanied by his family.

Nair said he was happy that the boy had decided to take the matter to court. "Our organisation has been lobbying for the sign language to be declared an official language in schools for a long time now," he said. - Sapa

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