Kliptown Primary School in Soweto is made of asbestos. Asbestos fibres are so dangerous that it is illegal for an employer to put any person at risk of exposure to them. Yet learners of Kliptown Primary and 28 other schools in Gauteng attend class in buildings made of the substance. The Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) committed to upgrade Kliptown Primary and other such schools made from asbestos by today, 29 November 2016, the first deadline stipulated by the Norms and Standards for School Infrastructure.
This deadline promised that all schools made of mud, asbestos, wood, metal or any other inappropriate material must be replaced by today. It also promised that access to water, electricity and toilets be provided to all schools by today.
The GDE has thus far failed to rebuild any of the 29 asbestos schools, thus failing to comply with its legal obligations. MEC Lesufi has violated the Norms and Standards for School Infrastructure Regulations.
Asbestos schools shine a light on the broader failure of wealthier provinces to meet the Norms and Standards deadlines.
Equal Education, a movement of learners, parents and community members, will be hosting a vigil to mark the first Norms and Standards deadline. We demand that the GDE #FixOurSchools, and put an end to poor school infrastructure.
Please join Equal Education, along with members of school governing bodies and parents, at the vigil:
Date: 29 November 2016
Time: 3pm to 6pm
Venue: Kliptown Primary School, Kliptown, Soweto.
For further information:
Zandile Ngubeni (Co-Head of EE Gauteng): 072 684 4272
Naadira Munshi (Co-Head of EE Gauteng): 082 494 3988