Dimbaza Primary School launches school safety committee
20 Sep 2009
“Safety is an obligation in schools for proper learning and teaching, therefore learners must say no to crime, drugs and vandalism,” said Mhlangabezi Mbethe, Provincial Coordinator of School Safety programme during the launch of school safety committee at Dimbaza Primary School on, 17 September 2009.
The launch started in high spirits with students wearing ‘stop crime’ vests, holding up ‘phantsi ngentsango’ (no to dagga) placards, with the police brass band also lending their support to the initiative. The event was also graced by parents from the local community, Correctional Services was represented by Nomthandazo Dinge and Fani Nomalanga represented Social Development and Madla Makhalima from King William’s Town department of Education district office.
The role of school safety committee is to conduct continuous assessment of the schools environment, develop plans and programmes to improve safety and security at schools. The committee is designed to give all stakeholders an opportunity to build and maintain a culture of peace within schools and communities.
Launching the programme which is aimed in decreasing violence and indiscipline at schools, Mbethe disclosed that School Safety programme was introduced after a spate of criminal incidents in schools throughout the province. According to Mr Mbethe; since the introduction of the programme, there had been a remarkable decline in the number of reported cases at schools. He also disclosed that the department signed a memorandum of understanding with the Department of Safety and Liaison to:
* Establish School Safety programme at 53 identified schools and development of integrated crime prevention plans in those schools, which have been plagued by a number of incidents and violence
* Strengthen community participation in school safety programmes. Various departments that were represented read out their messages of support for the programme. Encouraging learners to stay away from drugs and crime, Nomthandazo Dinge said “gateway drugs like alcohol and cigarettes usually lure the consumers to dagga, cocaine and other drugs. Frequently use of all those substances leads to bankruptcy and that is when learners usually start shoplifting, robbery and all other forms of crime which in the end leads to jail.”
Social Development representative shared the same sentiments encouraging all education stakeholders to make it their responsibility to ensure that there is tranquillity at schools.
“I proudly declare that preventing crime in schools is possible. If teachers can observe weird behaviour of their learners, then report these incidents to social workers, we can win this battle. Slowly but surely we are bringing safety back to schools,” added Mandla Makhalima.
Students’ drama group entertained the audience with a live performance, carrying the message that ‘crime never pays but diminishes ones future’. They also blew a whistle that teachers and parents must keep them occupied through sport activities during weekends and holidays, so as to avoid temptations associated with idleness.
Issued by: Department of Education, Eastern Cape Provincial Government
20 September 2009
Source: Department of Education, Eastern Cape Provincial Government (http://www.ecdoe.gov.za/)
Issued by: Eastern Cape Provincial Government
20 Sep 2009
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