KwaZulu-Natal - Classes at Khulabebuka High School resumed on Monday after almost three weeks of no teaching and learning following the principal’s suspension.
Last week, KwaZulu-Natal education boss, Nkosinathi Sishi, threatened to shut down the top-performing uMbumbulu school if classes did not resume this week.
He gave the school governing body (SGB) an ultimatum during a visit to the school and a warning of criminal charges against those found to be responsible for the disruptions.
Schooling was disrupted as parents and pupils protested against the decision to suspend the principal, Premilla Deonath, last month, pending the outcome of an investigation into alleged mismanagement, maladministration and incitement of parents and the community. Deonath has denied the allegations.
Officials of the uMlazi education district office confirmed that classes had resumed.
SGB chairman, Mkhithikelo Buthelezi, said the decision was taken at a parents’ meeting held at the weekend.
“We agreed that the children should go back to school, because out of all of this, they suffer the most when it comes to their education,” he said.
Buthelezi said parents wanted Deonath back at the school.
“We would rather have the investigation being conducted while she reports to school, not while she sits at home,” he said. “The department should conclude the investigation speedily, because we would like to have Deonath back by the end of this week.”
Sishi, the education superintendent-general, visited the school on Wednesday after receiving a report from district officials that teaching and learning had been halted by supporters of the principal.
Deonath’s letter of suspension had to be served by a sheriff of the court at her home on July 23, allegedly because education officials were too scared to go to the school, where Deonath’s supporters had allegedly camped out.
Deonath said on Monday night that her pupils should not get involved in what she called petty politics.
“They deserve the best and should continue with their schooling,” she said.
“It doesn’t matter what I am going through, my kids must not get caught up in this.
“Now is the time for them to put their hearts and minds into their books.”
Deonath said she still had not received any feedback from the department on the allegations against her. - Daily News