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Bishop Lavis school urges community to help fight break-ins

Bergville Primary School has already had three break-ins this year, with the latest leaving it unable to make phone calls, use internet services or access important documents on computers.

Bergville Primary School in Bishop Lavis has been burgled three times since the beginning of this school year. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

CAPE TOWN - A Bishop Lavis principal is calling on the community to be the school's eyes and ears to combat break-ins.

Bergville Primary School has already had three break-ins this year, with the latest leaving it unable to make phone calls, use internet services or access important documents on computers.

Computer hard drives, an aircon and the telecoms system are among the items stolen over the past few months.

Because of the constant break-ins, the school feels more like a prison.

The lights, cameras and even the fire hose are all caged and at every turn there's a gate with a lock.

Principal Aleem Abrahams says that despite security measures, thieves find a way in.

"The solution is physical security, 24 hours a day and if parents can become partners, then it will work."

Teacher Madeniah Adams says that thieves often vandalise important teaching material and children's books.

"There's the trauma attached to it and automatically there's a delay in the quality of the work we need to deliver. Administratively at the moment, we have nothing."

Head girl Sydney Solomons says pupils are severely affected.

"It is breaking us down. We get these opportunities from the school... I know it''s hard because we live in Bishop Lavis but we need to be strong. This is a school."

The principal is now in the process of setting up street committees to help safeguard the school.

Over the March holiday period, incidents of vandalism and burglaries at schools in the Western Cape more than doubled from 10 incidents reported in 2018 to 22 incidents this year.

The Western Cape Education Department is urging community members to be extra vigilant throughout the school year and to immediately report suspicious activities around schools.

WATCH: Bishop Lavis school burgled 3 times since start of the school year