The South African Council for Educators (SACE) is “appalled” at a video that has gone viral on social media purporting to show two learners assaulting and kicking a teacher.
“Whilst we condemn and act decisively in dealing with teachers involving themselves in such conduct‚ Council feels something drastic needs to be done in stopping learners from conducting themselves in such a manner‚” the council said in a statement.
The exact circumstances around the video‚ when and where the assault happened‚ were unclear earlier on Tuesday.
In the 21-second clip‚ one learner grabs the teacher by her hair while a second kicks her from behind. The learner in front then grabs the teacher around her neck and wrestles her to the ground while the other continues to kick. The teacher then fights back before the pupils overpower her again.
SACE spokesperson Themba Ndhlovu condemned the pupils and said teachers needed support‚ protection and “respect at all times”.
The council called on the school governing body (SGB) and the Department of Basic Education to discipline the pupils involved and “mete out the harshest punishment”.
Teachers’ union Sadtu condemned violence at schools‚ as the video – and others – was shared widely on Tuesday.
Sadtu spokesperson Nomusa Cembi said the incident was part of a worrying trend.
“Such incidents seem to be escalating at a rapid pace. We condemn the incident. The law should take its course.”
Cembi appealed to parents to play a more active role by instilling discipline in their children.
“The level of violence at schools is uncalled for. Teachers really have it hard. Parents should play an active role and discipline their children.”