North West School Learners Protest Over Textbooks
Learners at a high school for deaf pupils in the North West are protesting due to a lack of textbooks. These learners are said to have not had textbooks since the beginning of the school year.
Pupils of North West Secondary School for the Deaf in Leeudoringstad have been protesting as they have not received textbooks for the year yet. We are currently in the middle of the second term of the 2021 school year.
Learning has now been disrupted at the school due to the protest action. A silent protest took place as the learners are deaf.
Six learners are completing their Matric and need textbooks to finish the year. They are not being provided books and the contractor which would supply them with books is said to not have been paid by the department since the 2018.
The Spokesperson for the Department of Education in the province responded to these issues by saying:
What I can indicate is that we are viewing this matter as a very serious matter. In such a way, we have requested out Chief Financial Officer to urgently intervene on this matter.
Learners at the school have said that this is an infringement of their rights as the department is not providing them with the materials they need to ensure that adequate learning can take place. They continued to say that Section 29 of the Constitution is not being adhered to. The section reads:
Everyone has the right (a) to a basic education, including adult basic education, and (b) to further education, which the state through reasonable measures, must make progressively available and accessible.
The School Governing Body (SGB) of the school said that the department is not doing enough to support the school. There is said to also not have been adequate subjects introduced for learners.
The Department is said to have a special unit which deals with special schools in North West and here, they are conducting intensive investigations.
Textbooks aren't the only issue these protests have brought to light. Complaints have come concerning the principal as well as the security at the school.
In 2015, a hostel at this same school burned down which lead to the death of three learners and 13 other learners being injured.
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