Media Release
Minister of Education Donald Grant
Western Cape

20 April, 2011

Minister Grant angered by disruptions

Statement by Minister Donald Grant, Minister of Education, Western Cape

I am angered and disappointed by the fact that teaching and learning has been disrupted for the third day at Masibambisane Secondary School.

It appears that learners, led by three identified ‘ringleaders’, vented their misguided frustration with the school by stoning educators cars and other property.

The situation was brought swiftly under control by SAPS, and I have been informed that the alleged ‘ringleaders’ are due to be arrested this morning.

It is my firm belief that this action is completely unnecessary and it is clear that innocent young learners are being pressurized to pursue agendas that are not in their best interests.

It appears that the conflict was sparked by the decision of the principal and the department to not allow party-political activity at the school during school hours. This has now seemingly been used as a pretext to raise a number of other unsubstantiated concerns.

The actions over the last three days are made even more disappointing by the fact that the schools academic performance over the last 3 years, under the leadership of their principal Mr Boesman, has shown some signs of improvement. While their academic performance is inconsistent, the school has taken pro-active measures to improve their matric pass rate which was as low as 42% in 2008, increasing to 73% in 2009 and then after a very difficult year, decreasing to 50.6% in 2010. The school is currently working very hard to improve their outcomes and is now offering after school, weekend and holiday tuition for Grade 12 learners. They also started grade 12 classes 7 days early and 2 days early for the rest of the school to make up for the Easter Holiday break.

The school will be closed today and tomorrow, and will re-open on the 3rd of May.

The department will ensure that any teaching and learning time lost over the last three days, will be made up in the next term.

We will also work tirelessly to resolve the situation.

I appeal to all involved to help ensure that when the school re-opens that teaching and learning will be allowed to continue without any further disruption.

If any individual does not obey the law they will be firmly dealt with.

For enquiries, contact Bronagh Casey:  072 724 1422 or

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