Angry parents shut down Verulam school over 'racist' principal
The principal is accused of discriminating against black pupils and calling them monkeys.
Angry parents arrived at Umhloti Primary School in the morning and threatened Department of Education officials sent by Education MEC Kwazi Mshengu to intervene.
A meeting was held between the parents and the officials.
The officials had a hard time trying to calm the angry parents, who want the principal removed as soon as possible.
Classes were cancelled for the day.
Media inside the school were asked to leave by the department officials to allow the parents, teachers and the principal to speak without fear.
Ntombifuthi Mpotshane, the school governing body (SGB) chairperson, told Isolezwe, the Daily News’ sister paper, prior to the meeting that her own child was a victim of discrimination at the school.
“My child came home in tears and told me that the principal called her a monkey. We were never part of the decision to deploy this principal to this school. We were not even part of his employment process and we were never even given the opportunity to make our recommendations as the SGB.
“The principal was imposed on us,” said Mpotshane.
Other parents expressed concerns such as the use of corporal punishment at the school.
Another parent complained about the language used to teach by some of the Indian teachers, who apparently used an informal version of isiZulu known as Fanakalo.
Education Department spokesperson Muzi Mahlambi urged parents to leave the matter to the department to resolve.
“It is unfortunate when parents are the ones who disrupt classes because at the end of the day it is the pupils who suffer,” said Mahlambi.