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Transforming Society

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Restoring Dignity

Lack of safety at NW special needs schools in spotlight

07 August 2019

The state of the North West education system will get under scrutiny when the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) releases a report on the lack of safety and security in schools for children with special needs.
The report, set to be released on Thursday, is expected to paint a clear picture of the situation in the province where challenges are being experienced and set out corrective measures for the provincial department of education.

The commission’s report will come soon after they hosted an investigative hearing at the North West School for the Deaf where three pupils died in 2015.

The commission has thus far stated that a lack of schools for children with disabilities, a lack of resources at schools that exist, and teacher training for the children with special needs are amongst some of the key issues that the province has been grappling with.

At the beginning of the academic year, the province once again made headlines after a pupil died at the Christiana School for the Blind following the 2010 incident where four Christiana pupils died when a hostel room they had been sleeping in caught fire.

The pupils, aged between 8 and 13, tried to escape but died of smoke inhalation and their bodies were found near the door.
In August 2015, three female pupils, aged 16, 17 and 18, died in a fire that broke out at the North West School for the Deaf. 23 other pupils were injured when they jumped from the first floor of the building to escape the fire.

The Commission’s Communications Co-ordinator, Gushwell Brooks, in a statement says “the report and the recommendations set out therein are intended to constitute an urgent intervention compelling the relevant state bodies to actively take steps to mitigate ongoing safety and security concerns”.
The launch of the report is expected to take place at the North West School for the Deaf from 10am.

Source: OFM News

The South African Human Rights Commission.

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The Human Rights Commission is the national institution established to support constitutional democracy. It is committed to promote respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for everyone without fear or favour.

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