Durban school teacher resigns after racist comments

28 August 2018 - 11:29 By Jeff Wicks
File photo.
File photo.
Image: 123RF/paylessimages

A top Durban school is embroiled in a racism scandal after a teacher is alleged to have used a derogatory term when referring to black pupils.

It is understood that the teacher‚ whose identity is known to TimesLIVE‚ resigned from the Westville Girls High School on Monday.

In a letter issued by the school on Tuesday principal Catherine Raw outlined the scope of the school’s probe into the matter‚ which was initiated last week.

To all students, parents and alumni please see attached.

Posted by Westville Girls' High School - Alma mater on Tuesday, August 28, 2018

“I am sad and troubled to let you know that one of our staff stepped out of her role of teacher and used her position of parent in the classroom to make racist remarks and share her biased opinion of the South African political situation.”

“By doing this‚ not only did she break the law and violated the code of the school‚ but she also created a hurtful and unsafe environment for the learners in her class‚” Raw wrote.

She said that the school was made aware of the incident on Thursday last week‚ and by Friday morning had initiated their own internal investigation.

“The teacher requested an opportunity to apologise to the class. It was pointed out to her that this did not alter the investigation process in place. The teacher in question resigned from the school [on Monday] and she believes this resignation is in the best interests of the learners and the school.”

“Please be assured that an individual teacher’s racist comment and subsequent loss of control and bigoted view of the South African political landscape is not one shared by the school‚” she wrote.

The school nor the KZN Department of Education had responded to requests for comment at the time of publishing.

Westville Girls High governing body chair, Steven Tait confirmed the authenticity of the letter and said that a meeting with the provincial education department was to be held on Tuesday.