Schools reopen after bullets fly in gang turf wars

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Schools reopen after bullets fly in gang turf wars

Petru Saal | 2017-06-01 14:47:37.0

File photo.

Image by: Gallo images/iStockphoto

Four schools that were closed for days as bullets flew in gang violence at Lavender Hill in Cape Town have reopened under a heavy police presence.

But only about half of the pupils reported for classes on Thursday.

Western Cape Education Department spokesperson Jessica Shelver said the schools were closed “in the interest of learner and educator safety”.

“We do everything possible to protect our learners while on the school premises but learners are mainly at risk while travelling to and from schools. While we have no control over SAPS directly and its operations‚ we certainly try to engage with them on a regular basis to improve security around our schools‚” she said.

The affected schools are Lavender Hill High School‚ Levana Primary School‚ Hillwood Primary School and Prince George Primary School.

Hillwood Primary school principal Gavin Alkana told TimesLIVE on Thursday: “The situation in the area has calmed down. There has been police visibility. We have two security officers at the school but we are still sitting with less than 50% learner attendance.”

Alkana said that due to the safety concerns‚ many parents decided to keep their children at home as they walked to and from school.

“Two teachers had suffered mild strokes at school as a result of the ongoing shootings. Last week it was terrible. The shooting is non-stop. The educators are worried for their safety and that of the learners. The Education Department has sent out councillors to the schools to have one-on-one sessions with educators‚” he said.

One of the teachers has since reported back to work and another is recuperating at home.

A meeting was due to be held with parents at Lavender Hill on Thursday to encourage them to allow their children to return to school.



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