[lg policy] We hoped Hoërskool Overvaal row would fizzle out, says Angie Motshekga

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Mon Jan 22 10:19:04 EST 2018

 We hoped Hoërskool Overvaal row would fizzle out, says Angie Motshekga In
a visit to the school on Monday, the basic education minister said that a
matter for the courts should not have been dragged to the school premises
22 January 2018 - 16:30 Naledi Shange
[image: Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. Picture: SUNDAY TIMES]
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. Picture: SUNDAY TIMES

Basic Education Minister‚ Angie Motshekga, on Monday said that she and
department officials had not anticipated that the issues of Hoërskool
Overvaal would spiral out of control.

Addressing school officials‚ Motshekga said they had hoped that the matter
would "fizzle out" but this had not happened.

"As (Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza) Lesufi has just explained‚ we have been
talking about this matter and we just thought it would fizzle out and sort
itself out… but unfortunately it just took a turn that we didn’t expect‚"
said Motshekga, speaking during a visit to the school.

She said it was unfortunate that a matter for the courts had been dragged
to the school premises.

Motshekga stressed that children’s access to education should not be
interfered with and that those who were unhappy about last week’s ruling
could approach the courts.

"They are not involved in adult matters. There should be no violence nor
singing in front of the schools. So we are appealing to everybody to say
there is a process that is quite clear. If they are unhappy about the court
decision‚ then they must be friends of the court‚ but they must not bring
the battle to the school."

Motshekga issued a plea for disgruntled parties to stay away from the
school from Tuesday afternoon‚ adding those who had issues could instead
direct their concerns to her and Lesufi’s offices.

Motshekga also addressed learners at the school.

Tensions flared outside the school last week during protests over the
school’s language policy.

A number of people were arrested after a petrol bomb was thrown at a police
vehicle‚ allegedly by supporters of the Congress of South African Students.

The row erupted after the school refused an instruction by the education
department to accept 55 English-speaking pupils. The school said it had no
capacity to admit the learners and its decision was backed by the High
Court in Pretoria.

During the court battle‚ the department submitted that it had put all
necessary measures in place to accommodate the 55‚ including furniture‚
study material and an English teacher.


 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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