Khutsong pupils set classroom alight

A group of Khutsong pupils allegedly set a classroom and storeroom alight after dissatisfaction over the exam timetable, North West police said on Monday.

Superintendent Louis Jacobs said the pupils from Badirile High School started the fire just before 10am on Monday.

“They were not satisfied with the arrangement to start writing exams today [Monday],” he said.

All the pupils were sent home and Jacobs said the situation was calm.

Cases of arson and malicious damage to property were opened.

North West department of education spokesperson Charles Raseala said the exams were interrupted on Monday morning by a group who referred to themselves as members of the Congress of South African Students (Cosas).

The teachers cooperated and stopped invigilating the exams.

“We have made a call to parents and leadership in Khutsong to rise to the occasion and help us stabilise the situation.

“All we are now concerned about is the state of education,” he said, adding that it was “deteriorating”.

Raseala said the school would be open on Tuesday. However, it was not clear when the students would return and when classes would resume.

Jacobs said it was not known which pupils started the fires and no one had been arrested.

The extent of the damage was not immediately known.

“Police are patrolling the area to make sure there are no more outbreaks,” Jacobs said.

Cosas was not immediately available for comment.—Sapa

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