SAHRC vows to pursue all bullying, sexual misconduct cases in Limpopo schools

During its three-day hearing in the province this week, the commission heard how incidents of bullying, assault, and heavy-handed educators were often swept under the carpet by teachers or other authorities.

The SAHRC on day 3 of its hearing on bullying, corporal punishment and sexual relationships between educators and learners in schools in Limpopo on 20 May 2021. Picture: @SAHRCommission/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has said it will pursue all the cases of bullying, corporal punishment, and sexual misconduct that were bought forward by education organisations and parents during its hearings in Limpopo.

During its three-day hearing this week, the commission heard how incidents of bullying, assault and heavy-handed educators were often swept under the carpet by teachers or other authorities.

The commission said the aim of the hearings was to make findings into whether the Limpopo education department and other role players are adequately preventing, addressing, and discouraging the rising incidents of violence in schools.

This comes after the suicide of Mbilwi Secondary School Pupil, Lufuno Mavhunga.

The 15-year-old pupil took her own life after a video showing her being bullied by another pupil went viral on social media last month.

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* SAHRC left shocked after hearing bullying incidents in Limpopo

Last week, a teacher at the same school was arrested for the alleged rape of a pupil.

ALSO READ: Teacher at Mbilwi Secondary School arrested for alleged rape of pupil

The SAHRC hearing in Limpopo ended this week with fingers being pointed at failures in the education system when it comes to bullying, sexual relations with teachers, and corporal punishment at schools in Limpopo.

The commission’s national manager Victor Mavhidula spoke out strongly against teachers who turned a blind eye to unlawful incidents in their schools.

“I think it’s a huge failure in the implementation of policies in the department, and the department is not run a manner that can effectively eradicate bullying in our schools.”

Meanwhile, Save the Children South Africa’s Mamahloli Masipa said some teachers employed prior to 1994 were the ones still administering corporal punishment.

“We want to capacitate educators so that they have better ways in which they can discipline learners instead of resorting to corporal punishment.”

The commission said a report into its findings would be released soon.

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