‘System should criminalise vandalism of schools’

Last year more than 30 Limpopo schools were either burnt or vandalised in violent protests in Vuwani over demarcation disputes.

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG – Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga says her department is working to have vandalism at schools declared a crime.

Motshekga has given an update on the status of the country's education system, following a meeting with the council of education ministers.

Last year more than 30 Limpopo schools were either burnt or vandalised in violent protests in Vuwani over demarcation disputes.

The basic education minister says South Africa's schools have become soft targets for criminals, with safety and security becoming major concerns.

“If you remove a school door, you are not cheating a family of five, like if you remove a door of a family house – you are cheating generations. It should be seen in that light.”

She says those who vandalise school infrastructure should be dealt with harshly.

“We agreed that we are going to get the criminal system to criminalise, quite harshly, the vandalism of schools.”

Minister Motshekga says while the sector wants to ensure that children learn in a safe environment, infrastructure must be protected.

(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)