The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education, Bongiwe Mbinqo-Gigaba, has urged the relevant authorities to ensure that trauma counselling services are provided to learners and staff following the death of a learner in Sebokeng.
A 14-year-old learner from Thuto-Tiro Comprehensive School in Zone 10, Sebokeng, was allegedly stabbed to death in a classroom with a pair of scissors by a fellow 15-year-old learner on Monday morning.
According to media reports, the schoolboy was stabbed in the chest and paramedics were called and the learner was declared dead at the scene. The incident happened in front of other learners and staff.
Mbinqo-Gigaba has on behalf of the committee extended condolences to the family, friends and the school community.
“You are all in our thoughts during this difficult time,” Mbinqo-Gigaba said.
Mbinqo-Gigaba noted that although statistics seemed to be on the decline, according to a recent presentation by the Basic Education Department to the committee on violence in school, she was extremely concerned about such incidents in schools.
“One life lost is one life too many,” Mbinqo-Gigaba said.
She added that education is a societal matter, one that all South Africans should play an active role in, to ensure that schools remain safe spaces.
“What is happening in schools is a reflection of the society in which pupils live. This violence tends to play itself out on the school grounds when learners think violence is the only way to solve problems or to address challenges,” the chairperson said.
The chairperson further called on all role-players and stakeholders to play an active role in keeping schools safe in order for them to be conducive to quality education and learning.
The 15-year-old learner was arrested shortly after the incident and was put in a place of safety. He is expected to appear in the Sebokeng Magistrate’s Court today for allegedly killing a fellow learner.