For the students in Forest Village, a rainy or cold day is exciting because it means that they don’t have to learn outside in Winter’s freeze. As a result of this harsh reality, parents of the unplaced students have made a decision that comes with what they express to be in light of the failure of the provincial education department. They’re going to be using their own homes as classrooms for the time being so that the children have a warm place to learn.
Parent and chairperson of the task team in Forest Village, Noliziwe Ndikandika, told News24 that they had made the decision on the basis that they felt the department had “no interest in building a school in the area.”
“It is getting very cold and our children can no longer learn outside in the open,” Ndikandika said to the publication.
She went on to express, “My seven-year-old son, who’s suppose to be in Grade 1, gets very excited whenever it rains because he knows that means he won’t have to go to school and his friends won’t laugh at him for not attending a proper school,” she added.
For Ndikandika, the department had failed her child.
According to an anonymous volunteer teacher, the unofficial school’s parents decided to work out a rotational strategy. Offering their homes as classrooms between the school hours of 9am to 1pm. Each house was set to be allocated for a different grade.
According to the source, the experience has proven to be traumatic for the children, because while they see their peers going to “proper schools” they “carry crates and walk to their learning spot.”
The provincial education department’s spokesperson, Bronagh Hammond reportedly said that officials had ventured to the learning spot on Tuesday to find no pupils present.
“When this was reported to us yesterday, we investigated and no learners were present. If the pictures that have been provided are accurate, then it is most unfortunate that parents continue to send their children there despite the option to attend a legal public school being made available to them,” she added.