By Safiyia Stanfley, MPL, DA Provincial Spokesperson on Education in the Northern Cape:
The Democratic Alliance takes note of recent developments at the Hoër Landbouskool.
We are concerned about reports that the school is R1.8 million in debt. With the unique facilities at hand, the Hoër Landbouskool is in a good position to raise its own funds through agricultural production. For example, it is possible for the school to sell produce to other schools for the National School Nutrition Programme or it can sell pecan nuts, dairy or meat to the private sector. Because the school’s infrastructure has fallen into a state of disrepair, this is not possible.
The fact that the school governing body cannot manage the finances of the school does not justify kicking learners out into the night to fend for themselves or starving them.
We are told by concerned community members that parents were not informed timeously about the decision to block learners’ access to the food hall. No attempts were apparently made to find alternative accommodation for the affected learners, including those whose families are far away and those who are writing examinations at the moment. How can the department of Education possibly approve of these bullying tactics?
Other complaints of serious maladministration include poor implementation of the school’s admission and discipline policies, misuse and vandalism of school assets and questionable appointments.
These reports contradict the official position that has been communicated by the department, which is cause for grave concern.
Clearly, despite the blind insistence from the department, everything is not okay at the Hoër Landbouskool.