The United Democratic Movement is disheartened by the sad news of the passing of an educator at Sivuyile Primary School in Keiskammahoek, Eastern Cape. The video of a heated argument between an Educator and a learner started circulating on social media late last week.
The UDM is truly disappointed by this behaviour of the learner which is rapidly becoming a norm in our schools. The parents are to blame for allowing their children to take mobile phones to schools and the Department of Basic Education as well for failing to come to the rescue of the teachers who are subjected to the trauma of being abused by the learners.
The teachers are not safe in schools and there is very little that they can do to instill discipline to rude learners. As a result of this emotional abuse they are exposed to, they end up being victims of depression. As of now, there are quite a number of educators whose attendance is regular because of the depression.
The learners know it is not acceptable to bring phones in school premises but they continue to bring them because they are aware that the educators irrespective of whatever provocation there is very little that they can do. The learners have rights. An educator cannot confiscate a mobile phone from a learner in a classroom without being chastised.
The UDM calls on the Eastern Cape Education MEC, Fundile Gade to take educators into confidence on his plan that he has that will prevent this from happening again. The death of this educator must be really a wake-up call for the education stakeholders and the Country as a whole. Many Educators are experiencing depression due to the conditions they undergo whilst on duty.
May the Soul of the late Educator rest in eternal peace.
Mr Bongani Msomi
UDM Secretary General