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Still no learning at unsafe Lotus Gardens Secondary School

Temporary classrooms being erected at Lotus Gardens Secondary. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency (ANA)

Temporary classrooms being erected at Lotus Gardens Secondary. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Feb 10, 2022

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Betty Moleya

Pretoria - It has been a week since mobile classrooms were delivered to Lotus Gardens Secondary School, but parents are still not satisfied with efforts by the Gauteng Department of Education to get learning and teaching back on track.

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The classes were suspended four weeks ago amid concerns that the school was unsafe for pupils.

According to the parents, the school had collapsed ceilings, leaking roofs, no doors, non-functional toilets, one water tap for all and a classroom that collapsed six years ago.

The parents requested the 40 mobile classrooms as a temporary measure while repairs were under way. However, only six were delivered to the school, which has about 1 400 pupils.

Parent Shai Mogano said the mobile classrooms could only accommodate 500 learners.

Yesterday the parents and community gathered at the school again after a failed meeting with department officials.

Another parent, Neil Naidoo, said the department needed to stop lying to the parents.

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"They lied to us for the second time that they would meet us, but then rescheduled the meeting."

Naidoo said the only thing parents needed was for their children to go back to school and learn.

The six mobile classrooms are being used by Grade 12 pupils while other pupils sit under trees.

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"Other learners are still attending school, but are still not being taught. That is why other learners do not attend school any more," said Naidoo.

The department had yet to comment by yesterday afternoon.

Lotus Gardens Secondary School is not the only school with an infrastructure crisis. A similar scenario is playing itself out at Sekampaneng Primary School in Hammanskraal.

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On Friday, One South Africa Movement, headed by Mmusi Maimane, handed over a memorandum to Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, detailing a rescue plan for the schooling system.

One of the points is for security to be tightened at all schools and the re-prioritisation of the budget for digital learning and infrastructure.

Pretoria News

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