School destroyed by recent flooding, students demand solid structures
A severe storm in Cape Town on July 12 caused significant damage to Nomzamo High School, destroying prefabricated classrooms and toilets
Ntsiki Dlulani, head of Equal Education (EE) in the Western Cape said:
“The storm proved that prefab structures are unsafe for learners. We are tired of shortcuts.”
She led about 30 people during a picket outside the Western Cape Education Department’s (WCED) metro east offices in Kuilsriver on Wednesday. They are demanding that the prefabricated, temporary structures at Nomzamo High School be replaced with brick classrooms.
VARIOUS SCHOOLS LINK UP FOR PROTEST
Picketers included learners from high schools such as Nomzamo High, Khanyolwethu High and Gordon Secondary School.
A severe storm in Cape Town on 12 July caused significant damage to parts of Nomzamo High, overturning and destroying most of the prefabricated classrooms and toilets. The WCED has since replaced the damaged prefabricated structures with new ones.
“The law says that schools made out of mud, zinc, containers, should be eradicated and be built with proper infrastructure. In 2017 the same learners here today came to this metro east district to demand the plan for when their school would be built. This is not only limited to Nomzamo High, there’s also Bardale High and Primary in Mfuleni which is also built with prefabs.”
STORM HIGHLIGHTS UNSAFE ENVIRONMENT
Dlulani said the storm merely highlighted that the prefab structures are unsafe for learners.
She further stated that:
“Replacing container classrooms with containers is not a solution. What happens when there’s another storm? It is pure luck that learners and teachers were not at school during the storm.”
Learners have also complained that the prefabs become hot during summer and very cold in winter. “They can’t learn in those conditions,” said Dlulani.
Grade 11 learner at Nomzamo High Imikha Fanti had this to say:
“We want the education department to acknowledge that prefabs are not safe. We demand that the department show us a plan of how they will build the school, before more grades return to school.”
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