Windows, doors, taps, roof stolen as North West school is stripped yet again

Pupils left without water and electricity to be relocated to other schools

10 January 2022 - 19:21
By Orrin Singh
Windows, doors, the roof and electrical cables were stolen from the Tirelong Secondary School in North West during the December holidays. It is at least the fifth time the school has been burgled in two years.
Image: Twitter/@Lesba007 Windows, doors, the roof and electrical cables were stolen from the Tirelong Secondary School in North West during the December holidays. It is at least the fifth time the school has been burgled in two years.

A school in the North West has been burgled and stripped yet again after being renovated more than five times due to vandalism at a cost of almost R1m, leaving government officials in despair.

During the December holidays, Tirelong Secondary School, outside Rustenburg, was hit yet again as criminals stole electricity cables, water taps, the roof, books, window frames, doors and kitchen utensils. 

The North West education department said the school had been targeted since March 2020 and renovations had cost the department and a local mining house more than R800,000.

Parents and concerned residents gathered outside Tirelong Secondary School on Monday to meet the education MEC.
Image: Department of education Parents and concerned residents gathered outside Tirelong Secondary School on Monday to meet the education MEC.

With schools set to reopen soon the department said due to the latest incident it would not be adequate to cater for pupils.

“The school does not have running water or electricity. An intervention team consulted all stakeholders affected by requesting permission from parents to relocate the learners,” said the department.

Education MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela said the department would protect the pupils' right to education.

“I came here to assure parents that their children will be in safe hands when we relocate them to other schools. We want the learners of Tirelong Secondary School to start with the process of learning like other learners in other areas,” said Matsemela who met parents on Monday.

Matsemela said three schools — Moedwil, Naauwpoort and Boons Mega Farm School — would accommodate pupils for now.

“The learners will be provided with transport, accommodation and meals. Parents are not going to spend a cent during this entire process.”

She said a task team had been appointed to deal with the process of relocation and finding a permanent solution to the vandalism problem.

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