JOHANNESBURG – Hoerskool Overvaal’s language policy has fast degenerated into a political hot potato that forced the Afrikaans school to shut down on Thursday. A ring of steel met thousands of teachers, EFF, ANC, Black Land First members as well as pupils when they marched to the school.
Heavily-armed private security personnel and police also kept a close eye on the protesters that were seeking to force the school to change its policy and admit pupils who are non-Afrikaans speakers. Congress of SA Students (COSAS) and SA Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU) members in the Midvaal handed over a memorandum of demands to education officials at the school and gave them seven days to respond.
The memorandum demanded that the school adhere to transformation by accepting other pupils and that there was equality on the school, that is according to Sadtu member George Mollo.
“There are kids that live right next door to this school but you find that they have to get on to a bus and pay over R800 just for transport to attend other schools when there is one right here,” said Mollo.
Pupils being present in the march forced the Department of Education representatives to accept the memorandum of demands drawn up by members of Sadtu, Cosas and the Overvaal Transformation Committee. Pupils from schools as far as Soweto and Ekurhuleni came in numbers to support the Sadtu and Cosas led march.