Three Atlantis Secondary School pupils were wounded during an attack allegedly carried out by a knife-wielding matric pupil in a suspected gang-related incident.
The two Grade 12 pupils and one Grade 11 pupil were rushed to hospital after being stabbed in the back.
Two of them were stabbed three times while the other was stabbed twice on Tuesday, according to the provincial education department.
The department said the school’s principal had reported that during break time, a shooting had occurred in the community behind the school.
At the exact time of the alleged shooting, says the department, a Grade 12 pupil allegedly attacked three fellow pupils aged 19, 18 and 17 at the school.
Education MEC Debbie Schäfer’s spokesperson Jessica Shelver said the school transported the three pupils to a hospital and they were all in a stable condition.
“The alleged perpetrator fled the premises and did not return to school on Wednesday. Disciplinary action will be instituted against the alleged perpetrator,” she said.
Shelver said police were at the school on Tuesday and Wednesday. Police spokesperson FC van Wyk said an assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm case was registered yesterday for investigation.
“Circumstances surrounding a stabbing incident at a senior secondary school in Atlantis where a 17-year-old was stabbed is under investigation,” he said.
Shelver said gangsterism was a “very serious issue plaguing our schools and communities, and it is not a fight that we can tackle alone”.
“As a department, we are trying to work with other departments and spheres of government to tackle this scourge so that our learners can be protected in every possible way. We have been heartened by the improved co-operation between the WCG (Western Cape government), SAPS, Department of Justice, National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and the City, which is occurring largely through our Provincial Strategic Goal 2.”
She said the department had established an interministerial committee based on the national anti-gangsterism strategy, which comprises the MECs for Education, Community Safety, Social Development and Sport, Arts and Culture, as well as senior representatives from the police, the NPA, the Department of Justice and Correctional Services and City Law Enforcement.
“We will continue to persist, and we will work together with all spheres of government on improving the safety of our learners and educators in this province.
“Communities and parents must take their role seriously, as must every sphere of government, as it is only through a whole-of-society approach that we will be able to make significant progress in dealing with this complex issue that is bedevilling so many of our communities,” Shelver said.