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Teacher and pupil suspended after Sans Souci classroom fracas

The Sans Souci Girls High School teacher smacks a Grade 9 girl.
The Sans Souci Girls High School teacher smacks a Grade 9 girl.

The teacher and pupil involved in a fracas in a Cape Town high school classroom have been suspended.

A video of the argument at Sans Souci Girls' High School in Newlands that culminated in a shoving match and the teacher slapping the grade 9 pupil went viral on Wednesday.

Jessica Shelver, the spokesperson for Western Cape education MEC Debbie Schäfer, said on Thursday: "The learner and the educator are not at school today.

"They have both been informed by the school governing body that disciplinary steps will be taken against them. They have been suspended pending the disciplinary hearing."

Shelver said pupils and teachers at Sans Souci had been offered counselling and the school was investigating programmes to help teachers with "management of discipline".

Police confirmed on Wednesday that the teacher and pupil had opened criminal cases against each other.

"Two cases of assault were opened for investigation by Claremont SAPS, one by the parent of the learner and another one by a 33-year-old teacher," said Sgt Noloyiso Rwexana.

In the video, the teacher can be seen and heard embroiled in an argument with the pupil over a book. The teacher grabs the girl’s cellphone from her hands, telling her it is against the school’s regulations to have it during class. 

Matters quickly escalate as both the teacher and child accuse each other of swearing. The teacher tells the pupil to leave the class, but she refuses. The pupil says something inaudible and the teacher replies: "Are you swearing at me? You are speaking a different language in my class!"

The teacher then switches to Afrikaans, pushes the desk towards the pupil and gets close to her face. The pupil pushes the desk back towards the teacher and gets up. The teacher shouts: "Are you hitting me?" She slaps the pupil and continues: "You push me! You swear at me!" - TimesLive

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