A dilapidated Limpopo school (Kanana Primary School) where both primary and secondary pupils are squeezed into one class was yesterday shut down by agitated parents who are demanding for their own high school in the village.
The Kanana village in Moletji outside Polokwane, cannot boast of a high school. The only school in the village is a primary school – Kanana Primary School which they used as both primary and secondary, mixing up the pupils in one class.
This arrangement was made in 2010, when parents arranged for their children to be receiving high school education at the local primary school since that appeared to be the only option at the time. Grade 8s and 9s share a classroom, while Grade 10s and 11s do the same.
Only the 27 Grade 12 pupils have their own classroom in the school.
The Kanana Primary School is also in a bad condition with some windowless classrooms and broken desks and chalk boards. T make matters worse, some pupils actually had to carry chairs from their home to school while some others use their laps as desks to read or write.
What erupted the action by the parents and pupils was the fact that the department was making plans to build toilets for the high school pupils instead of relocating them to a new school.
They got the information yesterday as delivered by a contractor who visited to inform them that construction of toilets for the high school pupils would begin on Monday.
Chairwoman of Kanana Primary School governing body, Elizabeth Semenya recounted they asked the department on several occasions to build a high school for their children to no avail.
“We have decided to engage in protests because the department wanted to build toilets for our children inside the primary school while we do not have a secondary school,” Semenya said.
Acting as representative of the parents, Hildah Rakgatle, said in 2011, they got a promise of R4.8-million for the construction of a school but the money was yet to manifest. They even went to the extent of picking out a piece of land for the construction of the high school.
“Now that the department wants to build toilets for our secondary school children inside the primary school premises, we do not know if the department (also) expects our children to attend (lessons) inside those toilets,” Rakgatle said.
However, spokesman for the department Naledzani Rasila said that from their records, 10 classrooms, a multi-purpose room and a nutrition centre would be constructed for the new school in the 2016/2017 financial years which will commence as soon as possible.