A video of a learner allegedly assaulting a teacher on school premises has drawn the attention of the Department of Education as it admits that school violence is getting deadlier.
A  video of a learner allegedly assaulting a teacher on school premises has gone viral, drawing the attention of the Department of Education as it admits that school violence is getting deadlier.

The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education is investigating the circumstances around the incident in Hammarsdale, outside Durban, where the educator can be seen defending himself while being assaulted by a learner with bare fists.

This comes as it was revealed that the 16-year-old learner who was fatally stabbed by a schoolmate at Forest High School in Joburg had a pending armed robbery case at the time of his death.

This emerged on Monday when the alleged killer, Mohammed Mwela, 19, appeared at the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court and was granted R5000 bail.

Meanwhile, senior grade teacher in the assault video Ajibabi Sunday, laid a charge against the 20-year-old Grade 11 learner over the weekend with the assistance of the Educators Union of SA,

Sunday alleged that this wasn't his first assault at the school. He said this time he was injured in an eye and his glasses were damaged.

“I have been assaulted many times at the school. I reported the incidents to the principal and the deputy principal before. I think this job is not safe for me,” he said.

The incident occurred last week at Luthayi High School during mid-year exams.

Kwazi Mthethwa, the KZN education spokesperson, said that once the facts surrounding the incident had been gathered, the department would decide on the future of both the teacher and the learner. He noted that what was seen in the video did not show what led to the fight or assault.

“From the video it’s not clear who is assaulting whom. To me it looks like they are fighting. We are investigating the incident, and whoever will be found to be the perpetrator will be dealt with accordingly.

“Violence is not accepted in our schools. We have corrective measures to deal with such cases. If the pupil is found to be at fault he could face suspension or even expulsion, and the teacher may face disciplinary action.”

According to the teacher, the incident occurred after the learner tried to disrupt an exam.

Meanwhile, Basic Education Department spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga said there was no doubt that school violence was increasing and becoming deadlier and deadlier. 

"It's no longer about fights but it's now guns, knives and people dying - both learners and teachers.”

This is also echoed by a 2012 Centre for Justice and Crime Prevention study: “One in five secondary school learners - a total of 22.2% - had experienced (some form of) violence while at school in the 12 months between August 2011 and August 2012.

"This translates to just over a million learners across the country,” the report concluded.