MEC visits learner after abusive video goes viral

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Panyeza Lesufi meeting with the learner and his parents.

Panyaza Lesufi, the MEC for Education in Gauteng, visited Lewisham Primary School yesterday to meet with a learner and his parents.

In a video that surfaced five months ago, a learner can be seen pushing and pulling a male teacher while a female teacher tells him to let go. The male teacher gets away and walks off, but the Grade 7 learner continues screaming at the female teacher. Another pupil is also seen laughing while all this is going on.

On Twitter, Lesufi explained that the student has a medical condition that requires him to take medicine on a daily basis and on the day in question, he had not taken his medicine.

Lesufi said that after the video went viral, the learner was suspended and a disciplinary process was started after which it was recommended that the learner be expelled.

Yesterday, when he visited the school, Lesufi appointed an inter-departmental assessment team which is tasked with conducting an assessment into the learner’s well-being and his academic progress, and identifying an appropriate school for him.

The team must deliver their report and recommendations to the MEC on Tuesday 11 December.

The youngster has passed Grade 7 and will be progressing to Grade 8 next year, despite the upheaval.

“What happened is really unfortunate and regrettable; however, my concern is the well-being of the child and his future,” Lesufi said.

He added that the Department condemns the behaviour of the learner and has a zero-tolerance stance on all forms of misconduct.

“We urge learners to refrain from any misdemeanours,” he said.

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