The Inkatha Freedom Party calls on the KZN Provincial Government, in particular the Provincial Department of Education to work hard in ensuring that social cohesion is promoted in schools.
“The recent incident involving a Grade 11 pupil at the Pietermaritzburg Girls High School who referred to her fellow school mates using the K-word deserves urgent action from the MEC of Education, Mthandeni Dlungwane. This proves that in order to eradicate the scourge of racism in schools among learners, there is a great need to promote social cohesion. Without accepting one another learners will always use racist remarks among themselves. Social cohesion is the willingness of members of a society to cooperate with each other in order to survive and prosper. We don’t want segregation. People must treat one another fairy,” said IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson on Education, Mrs Madlopha-Mthethwa MPL.
“As the IFP we condemn any form of racism. Therefore, we believe that racism is a learned behaviour that the provincial government needs to help eradicate. We need to do more to ensure that what we’re doing in the schools deals with this problem. Enhancing school cohesion may hold benefits for the prevention of bullying and other social attitudes. Teachers have an important role to play in creating an enabling environment in schools that can foster social cohesion. As agents of peace, teachers are expected to impart values that espouse peace including tolerance, recognition and respect, and a range of skills such as critical thinking, negotiation, compromise and collaboration as well as model interpersonal relationships among learners,” continued Mrs Madlopha-Mthethwa.
“Schools have long been recognised as strategic institutions that can have a significant impact on social cohesion in South Africa; therefore it is imperative that our education system is efficiently structured to promote national unity. Education can play a vital part in building social cohesion among diverse groups in any society. If used positively it can forge a national identity which unites communities as schools prepare students with the knowledge and skills necessary for peaceful co-existence in a democratic society such as ours. Schools are the ideal institutions for the shaping of young minds and instilling attitudes geared towards diversity and positive change,” concluded Mrs Madlopha-Mthethwa.
The IFP demands that the KZN MEC of Education must tell the public what plans he has to address the scourge of racism in schools. He must act now before it is too late.
Mrs Thembeni Madlopha-Mthethwa MPL
IFP KZN Provincial Spokesperson on Education
079 114 3015/ 071 884 3844