Newspaper clipping – The Mercury – 29 September 2008

Safe Schools Summit hopes to find solutions

Sinegugu Ndlovu

A fresh approach to violence at KwaZulu-Natal schools is set to be adopted next month when the Safe Schools Summit is launched in Durban by the Education Department.

The announcement was made yesterday during the first day of the sixth three-day South African Democratic Teachers Union provincial conference.

Education MEC Ina Cronje addressed the summit yesterday and said she was concerned that crime and violence was affecting schools. She said the summit would provide a platform where people could talk creatively on the thorny issue.
“We don’t want a summit where people will just come and moan. We all know the problem and who better than teachers (to discuss the issue) because they are at the schools? We want to talk solutions clearly and creatively so that we can move forward,” she said.

ANC KZN deputy secretary Sihle Zikalala called for crime at schools to be ended. He said communities where schools were situated should establish street committees to fight crime.

The conference is also being used as a chance to focus on the role teachers should play in convincing people to vote in next year’s elections.