Principal removed following death of child

Germiston – Following the recent death of 15-year-old pupil, Leticia Jansen, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said the principal of Graceland Educational Centre has been ordered to report to the district office.

  The MEC blamed the school for negligence after Jansen, a Grade 9 pupil, was left by the scholar transport last Wednesday, and later found dead.

  Her body was found in Elsberg on the East Rand last week. She was raped, killed and set alight.

  Her grandmother reported the child missing to police but was told to bring a photograph of the child, the education department said in a statement.

  The grandmother reported the child missing to the school and it was confirmed that she was absent on Wednesday. The grandmother mobilised the community on Friday, they searched the nearby bush and found the body.

  The department said Leticia and some learners from Dukathole in Germiston, were last Wednesday left behind by the departmental scholar transport and had to return home. “It seems Leticia was left by her peers while walking back home, apparently after complaining about a heavy school bag. That was the last time they saw her,” the department said.

  Lesufi assured the family that if the school was in the wrong he would act decisively.

  “It is alleged that the scholar transport started a tendency of departing earlier than scheduled, leaving many learners behind. We will investigate circumstances surrounding this allegation. We have visited the family to convey our sincere condolences,” Lesufi said.

  The principal, Patricia Peters will report to the district offices until the investigation on circumstances surrounding the death of the child is completed, the MEC said.

  He also announced termination of the contract of the scholar transport provider, which was accused of leaving children behind last Wednesday.

  “A new scholar transport service provider has been appointed to effectively transport the pupils to and from school,” Lesufi said.

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