Lenient sentence for 'abuse'

A PRINCIPAL who was filmed beating a pupil with a hosepipe has only received a two-month suspension for the abuse.

Last year the country was shocked when two videos emerged from Diversity High School in South Hills, southern Johannesburg, showing corporal punishment being meted out by a teacher and principal.

In one a female teacher was filmed repeatedly striking a 16-year-old girl's knuckles with a blackboard duster.

In the other Diversity principal Hosea Maboya is seen striking a Grade 8 pupil four times with a hosepipe.

The female teacher was placed on precautionary suspension and her case is still ongoing. Maboya was also suspended.

During a parents meeting on March 3 the acting principal notified parents that Maboya's internal disciplinary hearing had been concluded and he was slapped with two months unpaid suspension. Maboya is expected back at work in April. His disciplinary hearing lasted three months.

Charles Phahlane, Gauteng education spokesman, said: "The sanction is decided by the presiding officer."

Parents are outraged by the lenient sentence. A father with children in Grades 9 and 12 said: "I do not understand why he was given such a lenient sentence. This will encourage teachers to beat our children."

Phahlane said in the last year the department had investigated 75 cases and only 53 of them had been completed.