Johannesburg - An investigation instituted by the Gauteng Education Department has shown that there was racial segregation at Curro Foundation School in Roodeplaat, east of Pretoria, MEC Panyaza Lesufi said on Thursday.
“The findings of the investigation confirmed the allegations that there was indeed segregation of learners at the school. This was confirmed by Curro management and they admitted that this was as a result of pressure from certain white parents,” Lesufi said in presenting the outcome of the investigation.
He said the investigation arose from a petition signed by certain parents of Grade R pupils at the private school. The petition raised concerns about allocation of Grade R pupils along racial lines, and was signed by 32 parents and handed to the principal of the school last year. The school made news headlines last year, prompting Lesufi to embark on a fact-finding mission to the school.
The practice by Curro was unacceptable and illegal, said Lesufi.
“This is unacceptable, discriminatory and contrary to the provisions of Section 9 of the Constitution… by segregating the learners based on their race, the school acted in a manner that was discriminatory and as a result violated section 7 of the Equality Act.”
“The school has admitted that its practice of segregation was wrong and they have acted quickly to reallocate learners of minority racial groups throughout the three English classes in Grade R after the submission of the petition.’
“In so doing, they have acted swiftly and they have also taken the steps of apologising, both to parents and publicly in the media.”
Although diversity training had taken place at the school, the department has recommended that the training be conducted on an annual basis for school management and teachers at the school, Lesufi added.