Investigation launched after principal accused of verbally abusing teachers is thrown out of office by angry parents

13 May 2021 - 21:25 By shonisani tshikalange
Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said the violent and disruptive behaviour of some parents at Laerskool Theresapark in Pretoria is a unacceptable and should be condemned in the strongest possible terms.
Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said the violent and disruptive behaviour of some parents at Laerskool Theresapark in Pretoria is a unacceptable and should be condemned in the strongest possible terms.
Image: SUPPLIED

The Gauteng education department has launched an investigation into a fracas between the principal and the school governing body at Laerskool Theresapark.

This follows the widespread circulation of a video on social media on Thursday, in which the principal of the school was violently thrown out of her office, allegedly by a group of parents.

The principal is accused of verbally abusing fellow teachers at the school and also bankrupting the school.

In the video, the principal — wearing jeans, a flowery shirt and a surgical mask — is seen being carried by a group of people while she sits on a black chair. The principal then appears to lose her balance, or is tipped over, and falls on to the floor.

Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said the violent and disruptive behaviour of the parents was unacceptable and must be condemned.

Lesufi stressed that parents had every right to be aggrieved if they believed that the principal was not working in the interests of the school, but they should not take the matter into their own hands.

“No amount of grievances can justify the use of violence on any of our teachers. That is simply non-negotiable. Further, there are processes and procedures, in law, that parents can take when they are having problems with the principals. We cannot condone this unacceptable behaviour,” Lesufi said.

Department spokesperson Steve Mabona said that, according to information at their disposal, the district management and the intervention team was dispatched to mediate the fracas between the principal and the parents.

“We are investigating the allegations that have been levelled against the principal and the school governing body. We will communicate the outcome thereof once the investigations are concluded. We are closely monitoring the situation and we are calling on parents to desist behaving in this fashion or else we will be left with no option but to take drastic steps. We urge the parents to direct the grievances to us and leave schoolchildren to learn,” said Lesufi.

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