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WC Community Safety MEC: School safety a top priority

Western Cape Community Safety MEC Alan Winde joined Education MEC Debbie Schafer, on a visit to Forest Village Leadership Academy in Eerste River, to mark the start of the 2019 academic year.

Alan Winde at the Forest Village Leadership Academy on 9 January 2019. Picture: Lauren Isaacs/EWN

CAPE TOWN – The Western Cape Community Safety MEC Alan Winde says school safety is at the top of his department’s list of priorities this year.

On Wednesday morning, Winde joined Education MEC Debbie Schafer, on a visit to Forest Village Leadership Academy in Eerste River, to mark the start of the 2019 academic year.

More than a million learners in the Western Cape started school on Wednesday.

Of the total, about a 100,000 are grade 1s.

Winde says more funds will be made available this year to improve the safety of learners, especially those in gang-riddled communities.

“We have areas in our province where school children have to do their homework underneath the table to miss the bullets. We have young people in our province who are under pressure because of safety. So, it’s a big issue for us between the Departments of Safety and Education. We are working very closely together.”

Winde has lauded those who volunteer for provincial government's Walking Bus initiative in which safety volunteers and parents escort groups of learners on foot to and from school.

“The fencing around at this school, they have the proper policies in place, they have a safety committee in place and the safety goes from fire drills right down to making sure that the young learners get them to school safely. We would like to thank all those volunteers who with their children and other children make sure they get to school safely.”

WATCH: #BackToSchool: 'Everything is so expensive', say parents

(Edited by Mihlali Ntsabo)