A Grade 8 pupil at Richmond High School in the Northern Cape has been stabbed to death, allegedly by another pupil at the school, while attending catch-up classes.
Northern Cape Department of Education spokesperson, Geoffrey van der Merwe, said on Wednesday that the department was shocked and saddened by the tragic event, which happened on Monday outside the Richmond High School premises.
He confirmed that the incident involved two Grade 8 pupils, both of whom were 15 years old.
“The one pupil stabbed his fellow classmate with a knife and the boy died on the scene.”
According to Van der Merwe, the school had arranged a special class for the Grade 8 pupils to give them an opportunity to complete their technology assignments.
“They were supposed to report for the class at 11am but some of the pupils in the grade, including these two boys, arrived about an hour late. As a result, the teachers were busy inside with the assignment and did not witness the fight that broke out. By the time they realised what was happening, it was already too late. The boy died on the scene in the arms of the teacher.”
According to Van der Merwe, the other boy had been issued with a suspension letter and appeared in court on Tuesday and the case was postponed to next week.
“Social workers have been at the school since Tuesday to provide counselling to the teachers and the pupils.”
He added that it was a clear indication that the current situation regarding violence in schools needed the department’s and the public’s undivided attention.
“It is important that parents play a more leading role in the school community as the home of a pupil is the first place where he or she learns morals, self-respect and discipline. Parents need to become more involved in their children’s lives and ensure that they come to school with the intention to learn.”