Race tensions rise at prestigious school

Parents at a prestigious school in Pretoria embarked on a protest action, alleging that the school was failing to deal with racial tensions.
Parents at a prestigious school in Pretoria embarked on a protest action, alleging that the school was failing to deal with racial tensions.
Image: 123rf.com

Parents at the prestigious Pretoria school, Cornwall Hill College, embarked on a protest action, calling for the resignation of the headmaster on Wednesday.

They accused Leon Kunneke, the school's executive principal, of failing to deal with race tensions at the academic institution.

The protest action started last year after the school's alumni and pupils wrote an open letter to the institution about the alleged racism.

In the letter,  they wanted the school to acknowledge that racism against black pupils was being perpetuated by other pupils and teachers at the institution.

They also called for the facility to detail the disciplinary action it was going to take against human rights abuses such as racism and discrimination based on religious grounds.

It is unclear on Wednesday if the school managed to resolve the issues mentioned above.

On Wednesday, Kunneke in a letter posted on Cornwall Hill College's Twitter account, said the school remains committed to being a caring, egalitarian, non-racial and inclusive educational institution.

"We also have relevant policies and procedures in place which are designed to deal with any pertinent matters.

"You may be aware that today, at our annual fundraising golf day held at the Pretoria Country Club there was some peaceful protest action around diversity and transformation at our school. We acknowledge the parent's pleas and recognise the importance of active and inclusive engagement on this critical issue," said Kunneke.

He said the school's diversity and transformation committee, which was established last year, has held a number of meetings and the board of directors have unequivocally committed to transformation.

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