Authority assembles team to investigate separation of pupils by race at school

A parent was reported disappointed and raised concern at the alleged separation of kids in school, prompting the North West MEC for education and sport development Sello Jonas Lehari and senior managers in the department to announce that on Friday they will conduct an intensive investigation into the separation of pupils at Laerskool Schweizer-Reneke based on race.

The image went   viral on social media showing a racially divided Grade R class at the North West primary school sparked outrage across the country.

According to TimesLive,  the mother of a grade R learner from Laerskool Schweizer-Reneke in the North West is fuming after a picture showed her child and three other black children sitting separately from the white children in their class.

The picture was shared on the school’s WhatsApp group by the children’s class teacher.

“This was meant to be an exciting day for me but it’s not,” said the parent.

The mother, who is not being named to protect the identity of her child, told TimesLIVE that her child’s first day in grade R had initially started off smoothly.

She and other parents dropped their children off and were asked to leave the school premises.

At 9am, they received an update from the children’s teacher on how their day was going via the WhatsApp group.

The picture showed the 18 white learners in the classroom all occupying a single large desk in the middle of the classroom, while the four black children in the class occupied one desk in a corner at the far end of the classroom.

“All I saw was messages from the white parents saying ‘dankie, dankie’ [‘thank you, thank you’ on the WhatsApp group] but no one was saying anything about the separation of the learners,” said the fuming mother.

She said after discussing this with another parent outside of the WhatsApp group, that parent contacted the school principal to ask about the seating arrangements

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