Teachers must feel safe in class

Teachers must feel safe in class.
Teachers must feel safe in class.
Image: Gallo Images/ IStock

The much-publicised assault of a female teacher by a pupil at Three Rivers Secondary School in Sedibeng, Vereeniging, is an unfortunate incident.

The video of the incident last week went viral on social media.

What also makes the incident worrying is the fact that the bully's classmates made light of it.

They laughed and captured the incident on camera, as the hapless educator was forced to leave the classroom.

Whoever captured the assault did it with precision and did not miss a single shot, implying that the whole thing could have been planned.

As parents and stakeholders, we should be very concerned about this trend of attacks on teachers.

Pupils have no right whatsoever to assault educators no matter how incensed they are, there should be proper channels at every school for pupils to follow to voice their grievances against teachers.

To resort to violence is not the right channel, and we urge the authorities to deal with the culprits decisively to send a strong message to other would-be wrongdoers.

As parents, we strive hard to teach our children to hold or manifest high principles for proper conduct, not only at home but also everywhere they find themselves - including at institutions of learning.

That the Gauteng department of education acted swiftly in suspending the bully from the school is encouraging.

But what is disturbing, though, is the reaction of the girl's parents. They were quick to defend their daughter, and we are not sure whether they did so after gathering all the facts leading to the attack.

However, we commend them for acknowledging the fact that their daughter was wrong and that she needed help.

That's the way to go for parents to help their troubled children. Parents should act in a manner that will instil a sense of discipline and responsibility in their children's actions.

It's easy for children to blame their parents for their own failures in life when they find themselves in trouble.

We call on education MEC Panyaza Lesufi to deal with this case decisively and curb the recurrences.

Our teachers, just like pupils, deserve to be safe at schools.