Hout Bay school mum on allegations of racism, exploitation
Cape Town - Disa Primary School in Hout Bay has remained tight-lipped on alleged racism against, and exploitation of, black staff at the school.
The school yesterday refused to comment on the claims following a picket by a group of Hout Bay residents outside the school.
The Western Cape Education Department said it recognised that schools needed to redouble their efforts in addressing inequalities and prejudices that still existed within various schools, as well as, in society in general.
Community activist Roscoe Jacobs claimed a number of staff members have come forward alleging racism and exploitation of black staff.
“The black staff are being treated differently from other races at the school. Many of them have reported that racism and exploitation of black staff at the school have been happening for over nine years now.
’’White staff members are granted leave without hesitation but it is a different case for black staff. We want more workers to come out in their numbers so that they can address these issues. The school has agreed to meet us next week to discuss the matters.”
When the school was contacted yesterday, the reception said that neither the institution nor the principal would be commenting on the matter.
Provincial Education Department (WCED) spokesperson Bronagh Hammond said: “Over the past few years the WCED has initiated many discussions with schools to address allegations of discrimination.
“While many issues have been resolved through courageous and ongoing conversations, and the implementation of various strategies, as for policies and protocols that promote inclusivity and diversity, much still needs to be done.
“The WCED condemns any form of prejudice. We are working very hard to instil the embracing of diversity across the province, and will continue to do so. Over the past two years, the WCED has been engaging schools with the aid of organisations specialising in this field to embrace various groups and cultures.”
She said the WCED’s Transform to Perform Strategy had a values programme being implemented in schools.
“We have conducted extensive training of educators in Values in Education.
“Schools have been asked to choose 12 values of each month of the year and to explain, talk, show and live these values.
“These values include respect for one another, kindness, caring etc. Schools are to have ongoing discussions with learners and educators on values and to undertake various initiatives that showcase them,” she said.