'Segregated' classroom photo sparks row in South Africa

10 January, 2019, 18:15 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Laerskool Schweizer Reneke

Earlier, parents were also contacted to remove their children from the school after protests erupted outside the premises on Thursday morning.

In the photo, a small group of black children are sitting at a separate table away from the white children.

"The matter has been brought to the attention of the provincial Department of Education who dispatched a team to the school to investigate as to what exactly happened".

TimesLIVE was told that the principal said she was not aware of the situation. "According to our South African Constitution on Chapter Two, Bill of Rights under education says, do not discriminate on the basis of race", Lehari stated.

The class teacher shared the photograph on the school's WhatsApp group.

"As government, we would like to condemn any form of racism, alleged or not, and we deeply regret this unfortunate incident taking place in our country 25 years into democracy", said a spokesperson for the local government leader, Job Lekgoro.

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A South African primary school teacher was suspended on Thursday after a photograph appeared to show black children sitting separately from white children in a classroom, sparking a storm of racism accusations.

They said wealthy black families felt they had no choice but to send their children to white-dominated private schools, where their children would be subjected to racism.

"All I saw was messages from the white parents saying "dankie, dankie" ['thank you, thank you' on the WhatsApp group] but no one was saying anything about the separation of the learners", said the fuming mother.

The image began circulating on social media. However, based on our understanding and the video you will see below, things have intensified outside the school, where protesters, dressed in political regalia, have picketed, chanting angrily and climbing the school's fence. "Around 9 o'clock the class teacher posted the picture saying they are settling well at school".

He added: "We are suspending her [the teacher] because we want the investigation to be fair and free".

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