Expulsion not always the solution for school violence, says WCED

It's less than a week since the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Satdu) called for parents and affected parties to urgently convene for summits aimed at addressing violence in schools.

That followed the stabbing of three learners, allegedly by a fellow pupil, at Forest High School in the South of Johannesburg at the beginning of last week.

Since then, another youngster - a 17-year-old boy - was stabbed to death, allegedly by a fellow 15-year old pupil, outside the Castle of Good Hope in Cape Town.

The Western Cape Education Department says there have been 18 stabbings at schools in the province since the beginning of the school year.

Spokesperson Brongah Hammond says measures such as routine searches in schools aren't always failproof.

A lot of the weapons are being hidden on school premises or being thrown over the school wall.

Bronagh Hammond, Director of communications - Western Cape Education Department

Hammond says while most of the incidents in the Western Cape are gang-related, some are not.

Sometimes it can be extremely petty, it could be over the breakup with a girlfriend or jealousy...where they don't know how to control their behaviour.

Bronagh Hammond, Director of communications - Western Cape Education Department

She says behaviour modification is one of the ways the department aims to tackle the spike in violence in schools.

The sad thing is, you don't want to use expulsion for everything. We'd rather try and get those learners before that kind of thing happens.

Bronagh Hammond, Director of communications - Western Cape Education Department

Listen to the full interview below:


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