Departmental Intervention Is the Result of Racism at Durban High School

Hillcrest Hill School in Durban, KwaZulu- Natal has been put under a microscope following numerous allegations about ongoing incidents of misconduct and racism at the school. Infuriated learners have expressed how they feel about attending the school.

The KwaZulu Natal Education Department has announced that it will hold a week-long commission of inquiry into allegations about incidents of racism, sexism, and bullying at Hillcrest High School in Durban.

The school has also been accused of covering up numerous incidents and acts of racism that have taken place amongst learners.

Learners have expressed that the school’s code of conduct is very problematic, saying that some codes applied stringently to black learners, whereas concessions were made for white learners.

In light of the events, KZN MEC of Education Mbali Frazer visited the High School on Thursday to meet with the school’s management team to address the concerns that were raised by the learners.

It is alleged that during last year, a series of WhatsApp group chat screenshots were posted on social media. The leaked chats have since sparked outrage amongst learners and parents.

In the chats, there is an exchange between a group of male learners using derogatory words toward black learners at the school.

Learners and parents have held numerous protests at the school expressing their concerns and anger towards the school for only putting the boys on a short suspension following the incident, and they feel that no real action is being taken to solve the issues of racism at the school.

Education MEC Mbali Frazer said:

Everything that was said by the learners was shocking and saddening. We cannot keep racists in our department, and we will not allow racism in our schools.

During the meeting, a hand full of learners spoke to the MEC and expressed that they do not feel safe at the school because they experience racist insults on a daily basis.

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Frazer added that the department will ensure that an experienced team is dealing with the inquiry and that the department is going to make sure that all the concerns that were brought up in the meeting will be addressed.

The inquiry is scheduled to be completed and ready by Friday 26, August.

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