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[LISTEN] Cornwall Hill College principal responds to racism allegations

1 June 2021 8:54 AM
Tags:
Racism in schools
Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi
Lesetja Kganyago
Cornwall Hill College
Leon Kunneke

Learners at Cornwall Hill College in Irene shared their experiences of racism at the school during protest action on Monday.

The executive principal of the elite Cornwall Hill College in Irene says the school has 'come a long way' in giving learners a 'sense of belonging'.

Leon Kunneke was responding to allegations of racism leveled at the institution and its faculty.

Parents and learners recently staged a number of peaceful protests at the school claiming not enough was being done in the area of transformation.

South African Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago is one of the parents at the school and on Monday said there was 'system racism' within its walls.

Kunneke told CapeTalk's Aubrey Masango that there is work to be done to put the success of the school in an 'African context'.

Our staff has already undergone diversity training.

Leon Kunneke, Executive principal - Cornwall Hill College

I'm pleased that we've attracted so much attention...so that we can move on and do something about it.

Leon Kunneke, Executive principal - Cornwall Hill College

RELATED: [LISTEN] My experience being a pupil of colour in a private girls school

On Monday, students shared their personal experiences of racism at the school in the presence of Gauteng Education MEC for Panyaza Lesufi.

Last year learners submitted a memorandum detailing incidents of racism at the college, but claim no action has been taken.

RELATED: 'Racism stops here' Panyaza Lesufi wades into Cornwall Hill College racism row

Speaking to CapeTalk's Mandy Wiener after his visit to the college on Monday Lesufi said there was an 'urgent need' for the school to review some of its policies, particularly those concerning hair.

The 'Cornwall way' is that we teach the young people to be proud of their uniforms and proud of their appearance.

Leon Kunneke, Executive principal - Cornwall Hill College

We got a group of parents, girls, and staff to sit down together and revise a [hair] policy that would be acceptable to all.

Leon Kunneke, Executive principal - Cornwall Hill College

Kunneke says steps have already been taken to address some of the other issues raised by learners and their parents.

So have we moved on? My feeling is very strongly yes.

Leon Kunneke, Executive principal - Cornwall Hill College

Responding to Mr Kunneke's assertions, host Aubrey Masango said:

"Cornwall represents an institution that has not recognised the fact that it is in an African country...and that is why many African children feel estranged at Cornwall."

Click below to listen to the full interview with Cornwall Hill College executive principal Leon Kunneke:




1 June 2021 8:54 AM
Tags:
Racism in schools
Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi
Lesetja Kganyago
Cornwall Hill College
Leon Kunneke

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