Redirecting...

Chapter 14

SECURITY AND HEALTH

14.1 RANDOM SEARCH AND SEIZURE AND DRUG TESTING AT SCHOOLS

14.1.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The Criminal Procedure Act, Act 51 of 1977 as amended [CPA]
  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]

 

GUIDELINES

  • Guidelines for the consideration of governing bodies in adopting a Code of Conduct for Learners, as published in Government Gazette No 18900 of 15 May 1998 [NG SGB CC]
  • Guide to Drug Testing in South African Schools [NG DT]

 

CIRCULAR

  • Circular S13 of 2017: Repeal of the proviso restricting accounting to learners offering mathematics only [S13/2017]

WesternCape

GUIDELINES

  • Safe Schools manual: “Procedural Manual for Managing Safety and Security within WCED Institutions”  [Reference B9 WCED SAFE]
  • WCED Guidelines for Random Search and Seizure, Circular no 0023/2009 [Reference B9 0023/2009]

NorthernCape

REGULATIONS

  • Examination Instructions: E86/2017; Management and administration of subject changes in Grades 10-12 (4 October 2017) [Reference B7 E86/2017]

14.1.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Random Search and Seizure and Drug Testing at Schools

  1. Unless authorised by the principal for legitimate educational purposes, no person may bring a dangerous object or illegal drug onto school premises or have such object or drug in his or her possession on school premises or during any school activity.
  2. Subject to subsection (c) below, the principal or his or her delegate may, at random, search any group of learners, or the property of a group of learners, for any dangerous object or illegal drug, if a fair and reasonable suspicion has been established-
    • that a dangerous object or an illegal drug may be found on school premises or during a school activity; or
    • that one or more learners on school premises or during a school activity are in possession of dangerous objects or illegal drugs.
  3. A search contemplated in subsection (b) above, may only be conducted after taking into account all relevant factors, including-
    • the best interest of the learners in question or of any other learner at the school;
    • the safety and health of the learners in question or of any other learner at the school;
    • reasonable evidence of illegal activity; and
    • all relevant evidence received.
      When conducting a search contemplated in subsection (b), the principal or his or her delegate must do so in a manner that is reasonable and proportional to the suspected illegal activity.
  4. Where a search contemplated in subsection (b) entails a body search of the learners in question, such search may only-
    • be conducted by-
      • the principal, if he or she is of the same gender as the learner; or
      • by the principal’s delegate, who must be of the same gender as the learner;
    • be done in a private area, and not in view of another learner;
    • be done if one adult witness, of the same gender as the learner, is present; and
    • be done if it does not extend to a search of a body cavity of the learner.
  5. Any dangerous object or illegal drug that has been seized must be-
    • clearly and correctly labelled with full particulars, including-
      • the name of learner in whose possession it was found;
      • the time and date of search and seizure;
      • an incident reference number;
      • the name of person who searched the learner;
      • the name of the witness; and
      • any other details that may be necessary to identify the item and incident;
    • recorded in the school record book; and
    • handed over to the police immediately to dispose of it in terms of section 31 of the Criminal Procedure Act, 1977 (Act 51 of 1977).
  6. If the police cannot collect the dangerous object or illegal drug from the school immediately, the principal or his or her delegate must-
    • take the dangerous object or illegal drug to the nearest police station; and
    • hand the dangerous object or illegal drug over to the police to dispose of it in terms of section 31 of the Criminal Procedure Act, 1977 (Act 51 of 1977).
  7. The police officer who receives the dangerous object or illegal drug must issue an official receipt for it to the principal or to his or her delegate.
  8. The principal or his or her delegate may at random administer a urine or other non-invasive test to any group of learners that is on fair and reasonable grounds suspected of using illegal drugs, after taking into account all relevant factors contemplated in subsection (c).
  9. A learner contemplated in subsection (h) may be subjected to a urine or other non-invasive test for illegal drugs only if-
    • the test is conducted by a person of the same gender;
    • it is done in a private area and not in view of another learner;
    • one adult witness, of the same gender as the learner, is present;
    • the sample is clearly and correctly labelled with full particulars as contemplated in subsection (5), with the necessary changes; and
    • a device contemplated in subsection (k) is used.
  10. The principal or his or her delegate must-
    • within one working day, if practicable, inform the parent that a random test or search and seizure was done in respect of his or her child; and
    • inform the learner and his or her parent of the result of the test immediately after it becomes available.
  11. The Minister must-
    • identify the device with which the test contemplated in subsection (h) is to be done and the procedure to be followed; and
    • publish the name of this device, and any other relevant information about it, in the Gazette. (GN 1140 IN and GG 31417 of 19 September 2008)
  12. A learner may be subjected to disciplinary proceedings if-
    • a dangerous object or illegal drug is found in his or her possession; or
    • his or her sample tested positive for an illegal drug.
  13. Any disciplinary proceedings in respect of a learner must be conducted in terms of the code of conduct contemplated in section (h).
  14. No criminal proceedings may be instituted by the school against a learner in respect of whom-
    • a search contemplated in subsection (2) was conducted and a dangerous object or illegal drug was found; or
    • a test contemplated in subsection (h) was conducted, which proved to be positive.

14.2 CAUSES OF VIOLENCE IN SCHOOLS AND POSSIBLE INTERVENTIONS

14.2.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • The Criminal Procedure Act, Act 51 of 1977 as amended [CPA]

 

GUIDELINES

  • Guidelines for the consideration of Governing Bodies in adopting a Code of Conduct for Learners (Published under General Notice 776 in Government Gazette 18900 of 15 May 1998) [NG SGB CC]
  • Bullying in schools [NG BULLYING]
  • Cyber Bullying – An Initiative of the Department of Basic Education [NG CYBER BULLYING]

Gauteng

POLICIES

  • Gauteng Province: Anti-bullying Policy Exemplar 2015 [Reference B3 ANTIBULLYING]

 

CIRCULAR

  • Circular 74 of 2007: Management of suspension and expulsion of learners in public ordinary schools [Reference B3 74/2007]

14.2.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Violence in Schools and Possible Interventions

  1. Bullying
    • Indicators of a bullying problem at school (Also read Gauteng Newsletter 24/01/2017)
      Learners who are being bullied will more than likely not speak about it. But they may show behaviour that will give educators a clue of what is happening. There may be other reasons they act like this, but watch out for bullying if a learner:

      • Is afraid to walk to or from school, or continually changes their route to school;
      • Is unwilling to go to school and is absent often or feels ill all particularly in the morning before school;
      • Begins doing poorly in his/her school work;
      • Becomes withdrawn;
      • Has unexplained scratches and bruises;
      • Becomes distressed and anxious, or stops eating;
      • Is different in some way from his/her peers e.g. being handicapped, being of a different race group from most of the children in the school, or being smaller than most of the children in the school.
    • The bully will often:
      • Be physically stronger than his/her peers;
      • Dislike school and be generally unhappy;
      • Experience problems at home, in particular witnessing violence at home;
      • Be exposed to inconsistent, harsh, physical punishment.
        If you suspect that bullying is happening to a learner, observe his or her actions during break and offer to help the learner to resolve the problem. You should speak to the learner in private to avoid further intimidation by the bullies. To give support to the learner who is a victim of bullying, follow the guidelines which detail how to assist victims.
    • The causes and effects of the problem
      To develop a whole school programme that addresses problems of bullying, first map out the causes and effects of the problem.

      • What form does the bullying in your school take? Some schools report predominantly physical abuse and some report mainly teasing and emotional abuse. Often emotional abuse takes place but young people can more easily hide it and educators are therefore not aware of it. Both kinds of bullying should be taken seriously. In fact some studies even show that children are more likely to commit suicide if they are victims of emotional abuse than if they are victims of physical abuse.
      • Who does the bullying? Some schools identify one-on-one bullying while others report bullying between groups of children. Also, bullying may differ from girls to boys; and from school to school. Typically boys are more likely to use physical violence and girls are more like to use emotional abuse – but this may not always be the case. Do some young people enjoy more status because of their involvement in particular groups such as sports teams or gangs, and does this make them more likely to bully others?
      • When does the bullying take place? Most schools indicate that bullying is most likely to take place at break time or after school. This is because children are often unsupervised at these times, or not as closely supervised. At these times children are also usually mixed in terms of age and gender, making it possible, for example, for bigger children to bully smaller ones.
      • Where does the bullying take place? Some areas are harder for educators to monitor than others, such as the playground, toilets, etc. It is important to identify those areas in which bullying are likely to take place.
    • Prioritise the issues to tackle in the short term and in the long term
      Decide which cases can be dealt with in the short term (in one year). Basing decisions on the answers given to the above questions, decide which causes should be dealt with in the long term.
    • Possible partners
      • Caregivers – will be able to tell you whether bullying also takes place at home. They can also help reinforce the lessons learned at school about bullying.
      • School governing body – can assist with drawing up an anti-bullying policy or dealing with cases of bullying.
        Once you have set up partnerships and decided how you will communicate and work together, call a meeting to brainstorm what kinds of interventions you can start with. Start by looking at the causes and effects of the problem that you outlined at the start. Try to design interventions that tackle the causes of the problem. Young people are often the best source of information as they are the ones who experience bullying. Try getting them involved in discussion groups or role-plays to brainstorm some of these issues.
    • Intervention programme
      Below are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Bullying can be subtle and it is hard to decide what is bullying and what is just ‘harmless teasing’. Some schools have developed a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to bullying. This involved creating a policy and set of rules around bullying. Learners were asked what bullying was taking place and what should be done about it. Meetings were also held with educators and parents. The rules they developed included the following:
      · We (learners and staff) agree that no learner will be permitted to bully or put down another learner.
      · We (learners and staff) agree that we will come to the aid of any student being bullied or put down, by telling a bully to stop and/or by getting help from an adult.
      If you don’t want to develop a policy, get learners involved in drawing up a ‘Bill of Rights’ for the school that will address bullying.
      The involvement of parents and educators. This may require that they become informed about how serious a problem bullying is in the school, so that they are willing to make their time available.
      Educators are often unaware of bullying. Appoint monitors to watch for bullying during the times that it is said to take place. Train the monitors in what to look out for and to whom to report it. Make learners aware that stopping bullying is everyone’s job – even if you are not a bully or a victim. A person to train monitors. This should be someone who is knowledgeable about the forms that bullying takes and some of its possible causes. A group of children (preferably older children) who are not implicated in bullying should be selected to act as monitors.
      Programmes can prevent bullying but this does not help children who have already been victims of bullying. Have group counselling sessions to address issues such as self-esteem, assertive­ness and conflict management. If this is not possible, young or new learners could be assigned a mentor who has to make sure that they are adjusting and are not experiencing too many diffi­culties. The counselling groups require a skilled group facilitator whom learners can trust. It is often better to have someone from outside the school. If you decide to use mentors, the mentors should be older children in the school who are good role models and are well respected among their peers.
    • Dealing with problems
      Common Problems Solutions That May Help
      Most research states how difficult it is to get children to talk about bullying to educators or parents. Have an anonymous box where children can leave descriptions of their experiences. Take every report of bullying seriously or children may fear not being believed.
      There is a lack of information about bullying for educators, and often little understanding of the problem. Contact one of the resources listed at the end of this section.
      There is a lack of interest among parents, governing bodies and educators to address bullying. Letting these groups know that nearly 40% of South African children are victims of bullying and that often children who are bullied become depressed and may even commit suicide. Also bullies are more likely to be arrested for committing a crime and are more likely to abuse their spouses in later life. Bullying happens in every school regardless of race or class.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      Work out a set of questions, for example:
    • Has bullying at break time decreased since monitors were put on duty and trained to deal with bullying?
    • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are monitoring the effects of introducing break time monitors, it may be helpful to keep a record of the number of reports of bullying that came to you through monitors and what the outcome of each report was.
    • Each action or intervention needs:
      • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success.
      • A plan for answering these questions.
      • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
  2. Information on bullying
    • Bullying in South Africa is extremely common. Most experts attribute this to children having been exposed to violence in society. Being a victim of bullying has serious long-term consequences. Children who are victims of bullying are likely to be depressed, lack self-esteem, dislike school and are more likely to commit suicide. They are also more likely to smoke or take drugs. The effects of being a bully are also severe. Bullies are more likely to be arrested for committing a criminal offence as adolescents, and are more likely to become abusive towards their spouses in later life.
    • Educators often fail to recognise that bullies may also have low self-esteem, are fearful and may be exposed to violence and abuse outside school. It is therefore more effective to be firm but supportive of bullies and praise the things they do well rather than to punish them, especially physically.
    • Victims should always be taken seriously and reports of bullying should never be written off as ‘just rough and tumble child’s play’. Often children do not feel that they can talk to adults because they blame the victim. Victims of bullying should be aware that they have the right not to be abused and to report it if they are.
    • The most important resource that schools have is the large group of children that are neither bullies nor victims but are witnesses to bullying. Interventions should focus on bullying being everybody’s problem. All learners should know that they have a responsibility to stop bullying, or to report it, even if it is happening to someone else.
  3. Helpful National Contact Numbers
    ChildLine offers confidential support and counselling to children who are victims of bullying or who are bullies. Tel: 08000 555 55
  4. Gangs
    • Indicators of problems with gangs at school
      Young gangsters will often:

      • Have an attitude of fearlessness;
      • Deal in or take drugs;
      • Attend school irregularly and show a drop in performance;
      • Have strong codes of conduct in the gang context;
      • Display symbols of their gang e.g. tattoos and/or greeting signs;
      • Have great access to money;
      • Have macho, sexist attitudes towards women;
      • Befriend other young people who are in gangs and/or change their own friends.
    • Causes and effects of the problem
      To develop school programmes to deal with the problem of gangs, first map out the causes and effects of the problem.

      • Who are the learners involved in gangs? This may often be evident from the tattoos they have and clothes they wear. Leaving a gang is often a death warrant for a gang member so once gang members have been identified, this information should be handled sensitively.
      • Where do gangs operate or meet? Gangs are typically territorial and battles for turf can be violent and frequent. This is particularly the case in defence gangs who also engage in housebreaking and other crime. Different gangs are therefore likely to have different places from which they operate. Linked to this, think about when gang activities take place and how this affects the ability to intervene (e.g. do they operate during or after school hours?).
      • What actions do gangs carry out? Do they claim to protect the community? Some gangs focus on stealing and housebreaking; others are involved in drug dealing.
    • Prioritise the issues to tackle in the short term and in the long term.
      Decide which causes can be dealt with in the short term (in one year). Basing decisions on the answers given to the above questions, decide which causes can be dealt with in the long term.
    • Possible partners
      • SAPS Gang-Busting Unit (Cape Town), or local police station.
      • Parents – often parents are blamed for their children’s behaviour. A no blame approach is essential if schools and families are to work together.
      • The school governing body – can play a monitoring role in the prevention of gangsterism.
      • Churches, youth clubs and sports centres.
        Once you have set up partnerships and decided how you will communicate and work together, call a meeting to brainstorm what kinds of interventions you can start with. Start by looking at the causes and effects of the problem that you outlined at the start. Try to design interventions that tackle the causes of the problem.
    • Intervention programmes
      Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Gangs are pervasive and very powerful in the community. Involve the community and families. Schools cannot solve a gang problem alone. Com­munity policing, street com­mittees or neighbourhood watches can be organised to curb gang activity at night. School premises can be used for community safety meetings and community policing forums, which can focus on tackling gang problems. Educators and other community role models can approach families of gang­sters to assist in any family problems and support the family.
      Gangs have sexist attitudes, which endanger women in the community. The Peace in the Community Campaign has had some success in creating an under­standing of gangsterism. In an area where gang rapes were common, the Community Action Group held an anti- rape campaign. Their approach involved workshops on rape, a door-to-door campaign to raise awareness, the distribution of a questionnaire to collect ideas from the residents on how to combat rape, and the distri­bution of a pamphlet on rape from Rape Crisis. Appoint a person with know­ledge of the effect of rape on individuals and communities to lead research and print mate­rials. Sponsors could be sought to publish awareness pamph­lets.
    • Dealing with common problems
      Common Problems Solutions That May Have Worked
      Parents deny their children’s involvement in gangs. This is a common problem, and is difficult to address. Remember that parents often deny their children’s involvement in gangs because they feel guilty. Blaming parents will only make matters worse. Focus on how schools can support and assist parents in dealing with the problem.
      It is very difficult to reform gang members and the consequences of leaving a gang are often severe for an individual gang member. Primary school educators have an important role to play in preventing gang behaviour. Children do not join gangs spontaneously and there are often warning signs. Look out for the indicators described above.
      Fear of gangsters makes community members unwilling to become involved in anti-gang programmes. The local police should always be informed of activities to address gangsterism. The police should be called if any situation is considered highly dangerous.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Has gang-related theft decreased since neighbourhood watch patrols were established?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions.
        • For instance, if you are monitoring the effects of introducing a neighbourhood watch programme, you will need to be familiar with local crime statistics and how these patterns change. The local police can assist in providing this information.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success;
        • A plan for answering these questions;
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Information on gangs
      • There are several important reasons why gangs are formed. Apartheid with its repressive laws played a role in the formation of gangs, as progressive youth organisations were banned and forced to operate underground. A general tolerance of violence has also exacerbated the problem.
      • In addition, apartheid policies have left many South African youth unskilled and therefore unemployed. Fifty percent of South African youth between the ages of 15 to 20 are unemployed, which often prompts a decision to join gangs for economic and social survival. In the face of the lack of opportunity, gangs offer a means to attain power and status, which would not otherwise be possible for young people. This desire for power often results in gangs picking on members of the community weaker or less able to protect themselves, typically women. Finally, personal experiences of abuse and prejudice lead to a desire for revenge, and may prompt young people to join gangs.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      • Childline offers counselling to young people.
        Tel: 08000 555 55
      • Lifeline offers 24 hour telephone counselling service, HIV/AIDS, trauma, rape, youth counselling, training and outreach programmes.
        Tel: (011) 728 1347, (021) 461 1111, (031) 232323.
        Web site: http://www.lifeline.co.za
      • NICRO offers community victim support, youth development and diversion, and trauma counselling.
        Tel: (021) 422 1225.
        E-mail: info@nicro.co.za
        Web site: nicro.org.za
  5. Racism
    • Indicators of problems with racism at school
      • Conflict between learners being described in racial terms (e.g. the ‘whites’ are doing this or the ‘blacks’ are doing that).
      • Conflict between learners being described in religious terms.
      • Treating one group of learners differently to another.
      • Learners only socialising and participating in work groups with people of their race group.
      • Educators make remarks that reinforce stereotypes or generalisations about different race groups. This is often based on a lack of awareness of cultural, religious and other norms held by different race groups.
    • The causes and effects of the problem
      Map out the causes and effects of the problem.

      • Which race group is being discriminated against? Racial discrimination happens between many different groups. A group that may seem to be the victim at one stage may be the perpetrator at another time.
      • Where does racial prejudice take place? Is it in the classroom when educators advantage one race group over another? Is it on the playground when learners interact?
      • Why does racism take place? Do learners lack knowledge about other cultures, or are they taught prejudice at home? This question may be discussed by learners in groups.
      • What forms does racism take? Racism can range from being very overt (such as violent physical attacks) to being extremely subtle (such as educators not involving learners of a particular race group in a debate).
    • Prioritise the issues to tackle in the short term and in the long term.
      Decide which causes can be dealt with in the short term (in one year). Basing decisions on the answers given to the above questions, decide which causes can be dealt with in the long term.
    • Possible Partners
      • Parents – often children learn racism from parents and other significant role models. Parents may need to be made aware of the effects that racism is having in the school.
      • NGO’s – there are non-profit organisations that specialise in assisting schools deal with racism through anti-bias and prejudice training.
        Once you have set up partnerships and decided how you will communicate and work together, call a meeting to brainstorm what kinds of interventions you can start with. Start by looking at the causes and effects of the problem that you outlined at the start. Try to design interventions that tackle the causes of the problem.
    • Intervention programmes
      Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Young people of different races do not interact with one another. Organise a sporting event in which the racial composition of the teams is mixed. Try to make sure that the sports chosen are ones in which team co-operation is required. These events should be held on an ongoing basis, in order that learners of different race groups have the opportunity to interact regularly. A sports educator who is sensitive to racism and the subtle ways in which it works. This person should also be a role model to pupils and well liked by them. Sporting facilities are also necessary but if these are not available, another event such as a debating competition between mixed race teams could be held.
      Children are learning their racial attitudes outside the school. Similar approaches to the one above can be taken with parents. For example, parent-learner sports days can help to break down racial stereotypes and build cohesion in the school. Parents must be willing to make time to attend. Organising such events can be time-consuming, and should be done by a person who is aware of the kinds of racial prejudice in the school.
      Classroom practices are based on the assumption that there are homogenous cultures and values in the school. Review the curriculum and think carefully about the ways in which it might reinforce a dominant culture. For example, does it place more emphasis on particular languages over others? Does it celebrate some religious holidays and not others? A person knowledgeable about diverse cultures and aware of the subtle ways in which racism can take place should be responsible for analysing the curriculum.
      Learners have very little understanding of how they can grow and benefit from a mix of cultures at school. Organise a cultural week at school, ask learners to talk about their culture and tradition, to bring food to share with others and to bring symbols that are linked to their cultures. Co-operation from the principal and other educators. Support from parents.
      When learners use their own languages, some groups feel “left out”. Encourage learners to learn different languages in the classroom; songs, common phrases and greetings are always a good way to begin. Willing and enthusiastic educators.
      The problem of prejudice reduction just seems too big for one educator to cope with! There are non-profit organisa­tions that can help you with bias and prejudice training in the classroom. The principal and parents should agree to bring someone into the school to help with prejudice reduction.
    • Dealing with problems
      Common Problems Solutions That May Help
      Learners are resistant to working or playing in mixed race groups. Be sensitive to how strong prejudices can be but also take a firm stand and make it clear to learners that race is not a justification for not taking part in mixed race events. If necessary a penalty for not participating can be introduced.
      When learners do report racist incidents educators are unwilling to pursue the matter. It is essential that all reports of racism be taken seriously. A system for complaints can be set up so that a learner who does not get any response to an accusation of racism can take it up with a person who is more senior and, if necessary, the school governing body. Learners should be made aware of the steps that they can take if they have been victims of racism and if their reports of racism have not been addressed.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      Work out a set of questions, for example:

      • Have interactions and socialising between learners of different race groups become more common?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, a record will need to be kept of the number of mixed sports teams, the number of learners who interact with people of other race groups, etc.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success.
        • A plan for answering these questions.
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Information on racism
      Although schools have recently become racially integrated, many learners still experience racism at school.

      • Reports of racism vary from derogatory remarks to physical violence between learners of different race groups. Other reports have shown that learners act out racist scenes that they have seen on television.
      • Many educators felt that there was little that could be done about racism and attributed it to ‘natural’ differences between people of different race groups. Comments such as these show the enormous amount of work that needs to be done with educators if learners are going to interact in a non-racist manner.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      • Human Rights Commission aims to develop an awareness of human rights among the people of South Africa, and investigates complaints of violations of human rights and seeks appropriate redress.
        Tel: (011) 484 8300
        Web site: www.sahrc.org.za
      • Human Rights Watch Africa offers advice on human rights, in particular the Bill of Rights
        Human Rights Watch Africa : +27 11 062 2850
        Web site: https://www.hrw.org/africa/south-africa
  6. Guns and weapons
    • Indicators of gun use at school
      The use of guns at school increases the chances that violent conflict will result in injury or death. A key component to building safe schools is to ensure that the school becomes a gun free zone.
    • Causes and effects of the problem
      To develop a programme to reduce gun use at school, first map out the causes and effects of the problem.

      • What is the extent of the gun problem? Often this is difficult to assess, as educators may be unaware of the number of learners and educators who carry weapons. For ways of gaining information about the numbers of learners and educators in possession of guns see the intervention section below.
      • Who are the main perpetrators? Are any groups of learners regularly threatened or do certain groups threaten others?
      • Where do learners get guns? Is there a particular person who could be supplying them, do some learners possess them legally, or are they taken from family members?
      • How are learners getting money for guns?
        Often being able to answer these questions can lead more directly to the source of the need for ‘self-defence’, which may indicate that a learner is being seriously bullied and victimised.
    • Prioritise the issues to tackle in the short term and in the long term
      Decide which causes can be dealt with in the short term (in one year). Basing decisions on the answers given to the above questions, decide which causes can be dealt with in the long term.
    • Possible partners:
      • The local police;
      • The school governing body;
      • The Gun Control Alliance;
      • Parents
        Once you have set up partnerships and decided how you will communicate and work together, call a meeting to brainstorm what kinds of interventions you can start with. Start by looking at the causes and effects of the problem that you outlined at the start. Try to design interventions that tackle the causes of the problem.
    • Intervention Programmes
      Following are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Guns are being brought to school without educators’ knowledge. Learners have easy access to guns. Some schools have assisted in setting up anonymous hotlines for learners to give information about learners who are carrying guns. Where possible, rewards are offered to learners who call with information. Although the school may be instrumental in setting up such a hotline, it should be co-ordinated from a police station. Police resources that outline the legislation on gun ownership and guns at school; Parents’ co-operation with the programme; Learners’ awareness of the hotline and trust in its confidentiality.
      Most gun programmes only address learners who have already brought guns to school. Some schools have developed curricula that help learners assess the risks of handgun ownership, resolve conflicts without violence, and generally make safer decisions. Educators familiar with youth violence and the role that weapons play in causing violence. Also a person who can facilitate confidential group discussions using role-playing, goal setting and leadership skills.
      Learners who have guns acquire status among their peers. Learners often idolise other learners with guns. Start an aggressive educational campaign that shows learners the effects that guns have and the risks that they take by carrying them. Get learners to sign a pledge that other schools can also sign, stating that they will act against guns and gun violence. Ensure that the learners themselves write the pledge. Learner’s Representative Coun­cils or other youth organisations to lead the pledge and motivate other learners to sign it. These learners should be role models to others.
      Part of the school is apathetic about the use of guns on school property. Start an inclusive campaign to make your school a gun free zone. Involve as many learners, educators and parents as you can. Provide educational inputs and strong motivations of why a gun free zone would be a good idea. The police will be of great help in such a campaign. So will Gun Free South Africa.
    • Dealing with problems
      Common Problems Solutions That Have Worked
      Learners are afraid to give educators information about learners with guns. The hotline should help with this. Alternatively, learners could be advised to give information directly to the police.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Has the hotline been effective?
        • How many reports of guns received through the hotline have led to the arrest of the learner concerned, or to the confiscation of the firearm?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring how effective the hotline has been in reducing the numbers of guns at school, you will need to keep a record of how many calls were made to the hotline and how many of these calls resulted in the confiscation of the gun concerned.
    • Each action or intervention needs:
      • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success.
      • A plan for answering these questions.
      • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      • Gun Free South Africa
        Gun Free South Africa (GFSA) is the lead organisation in the Gun Control Alliance, a network of organisations and individuals calling for stricter control of firearms in South Africa.
        Web site: http://www.gfsa.org.za/home/
        Tel: (011) 403 4590
        E-mail: gunfree@wn.apc.org
  7. Truancy
    • Indicators of truancy or low attendance of learners at school
      Truancy may be a symptom of:

      • Drug use;
      • Criminal activity;
      • Youth violence;
      • Violence at home;
      • Low self-esteem and depression;
      • Hopelessness and no sense of future;
      • Fear of being bullied;
      • Learning difficulties;
      • Pregnancy.
        Learners who are truant may be a victim of abuse at school or in the home. It is important for educators to find out the causes behind the truancy so that the learner can be assisted. To give support to the learner who is a victim of bullying, follow the guidelines in section one, which details how to assist victims.
    • Causes and effects of the problem
      To develop a programme at school that begins to deal with truancy, first map out the causes and effects of the problem.

      • Which children avoid school? Are they children with learning difficulties? Do they experience family problems or a lack of parental involvement?
      • What activities are children taking part in that keep them from school? Children may be reluctant to tell educators where they go during school hours but this is important information as it may explain why the learners are away from school.
    • Prioritise the issues to tackle in the short term and in the long term.
      Decide which causes can be dealt with in the short term (in one year). Basing decisions on the answers given to the above questions, decide which causes can be dealt with in the long term.
    • Possible partners:
      • School governing bodies – can help to mobilise and alert parents about what is happening to their children;
      • Parents – should be informed about their children’s whereabouts. If learners are not at school their parents should know;
      • Police – attending school is compulsory for children over seven years old and ‘adopt a cop’ programmes have been used to address truancy;
      • Community members – can inform schools if they notice children out of school during school hours.
        Once you have set up partnerships and decided how you will communicate and work together, call a meeting to brainstorm what kinds of interventions you can start with. Start by looking at the causes and effects of the problem that you outlined at the start. Try to design interventions that tackle the causes of the problem at your school.
    • Intervention Programmes
      Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Involvement in crime or drugs is often a cause of truancy Programmes in the United States have imposed curfews on young people at night. This can, with the co-operation of parents,  ensure that children’s activities are monitored at all times. Schools can agree to keep parents informed of children’s whereabouts during school hours and parents can keep schools informed of children’s whereabouts after school hours. Co-operation from parents and educators.
      Truancy is often a symptom of involvement with drugs or gangs. It is important to address the causes of the problem rather than the symptoms. Do some research into why children are absent from school? It may be that a child who has been taking drugs or who has joined a gang loses interest in school. There are projects that bring together community services, businesses and public and private agencies at schools to prevent children dropping out of school and to reduce related risk factors, such as drug and alcohol abuse, illiteracy, gang involvement, violence and teen pregnancy. The entire community, not just the school, needs to take responsibility for preventing school dropouts and delinquency. Absence from school has been referred to as a symptom of various problems. Think about whether these problems describe the learners who are absent from school. Offer counselling (or refer the child to Childline or Lifeline) to address the underlying problem.
      Parents are often unable to supervise their children after school. Setting up an after-school care programme deals with the issues of safety and protection of children, reduces truancy and improves school performance. Co-operation from parents, teachers and neighbourhood guardian projects.
    • Dealing with problems
      Common Problems Solutions That Have Worked
      Young people are reluctant to talk about the reasons for their truancy. Confidential counselling may help young people come to terms with the causes of truancy. This may require the school’s participation if truancy is a symptom of bullying or poor academic ability.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
    • Work out a set of questions, for example:
      • Has truancy decreased over the last few months?Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring how truancy has decreased, you will need to keep records of how many learners are absent at what times of the week or month, and follow up the reasons for this.
    • Each action or intervention needs:
      • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success;
      • A plan for answering these questions;
      • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Information on truancy
      Truancy is often a symptom that something else is bothering a learner. Keeping young people in school is an important step towards keeping them out of trouble. Young people who skip school are not only more likely to be involved in crime and drugs during school hours, but truancy is also often the first step to greater involvement in criminal activity. Studies have shown that two-thirds of male juveniles arrested while truant tested positive for drug use. Many police departments have found that rising daytime crime can be traced in part to truancy.
    • Helpful resources
      Truancy is often a symptom that the learner is facing other types of problems such as drug or alcohol abuse, or being a victim of abuse in the home. Use the numbers listed elsewhere to assist with these problems.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      ChildLine offers counselling to young people.
      Tel: 08000 555 55
  8. Witchcraft
    • Indicators of a witchcraft problem at school
      • Attacks on people in the community because they are supposedly involved in witchcraft.
      • Attacks are often on women or girl children.
      • Typically misfortunes blamed on witches are illness, school failure or even death. If these things are prevalent in a community that believes in witchcraft, ‘witch purging’ may take place.
    • The causes and effects of the problem
      Map out the causes and effects of the problem.

      • Who is accused of being a witch and who is accusing them? Women are most likely to be accused of witchcraft due to a combination of cultural beliefs and their lack of power in society. People have been known to accuse those whom they consider to be enemies or of whom they are jealous. It is therefore very important to identify who is accusing a person of witchcraft.
      • When did the accusations start? Was there any particular event that led up to it?
      • Where do the attacks on supposed witches take place? Are there particular areas where it is hard to monitor children?
      • What kinds of things are done to people accused of witchcraft?
    • Prioritise which issues to tackle in the short term and in the long term
      Decide which causes can be dealt with in the short term (in one year). Basing decisions on the answers given to the above questions, decide which causes can be dealt with in the long term.
    • Possible partners:
      • Traditional leaders or prominent community members;
      • Parents;
      • SAPS;
      • The Gender Commission.
        Once you have set up partnerships and decided how you will communicate and work together, call a meeting to brainstorm what kinds of interventions you can start with. Start by looking at the causes and effects of the problem that you outlined at the start. Try to design interventions that tackle the causes of the problem.
    • Intervention programmes
      Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Witchcraft is rooted in traditional belief systems. Prevention of attacks should be the first priority. The SAPS in the Northern Province have developed a programme which includes a combination of education for community members and schools, protection for people accused of witchcraft, resettlement villages for those accused of witchcraft, and public rallies by chiefs, churches and politicians to change perceptions of witchcraft. The co-operation of prominent community leaders and the SAPS.
    • Dealing with problems
      Common Problems Solutions That Have Worked
      People are afraid to speak about witch purging, especially if many people have been responsible for the attacks. The targets of attacks are usually women. After being accused of witchcraft, a person is very unsafe. Try to be aware of rumours that are developing. Think of the indicators listed above and respond to any suspicion of witch purging. Education that promotes gender equality is important. Attacks on women are based on the assumption that women are ‘naturally’ jealous and are therefore prone to witchcraft. These stereotypes should be challenged through education. The SAPS in the Northern Province have settlement villages to protect people accused of witchcraft.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Have attacks on ‘witches’ decreased?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions.
        • For instance, if you are monitoring whether attacks on ‘witches’ have decreased, you will need to keep records of how many accusations were made before the programme and how many have been made since the programme. The local police can assist with gathering this information.
    • Each action or intervention needs:
      • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success.
      • A plan for answering these questions.
      • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Information on witchcraft
      • Witchcraft and rituals associated with it have historically been prevalent in South Africa, particularly in rural areas. Witchcraft in itself is not a crime and does not pose a threat to the community. Rather, it is the practice of witch purging or attacks on people thought to be witches that is of concern as it often leads to banishment, assaults on the person and even death.
      • Women are the primary victims of attacks on witches for several reasons. Firstly it is believed that witchcraft is passed from mother to child in breast milk. Women are also thought to be jealous and envious, which makes them prone to witchcraft, and women are thought to be weak and therefore practice witchcraft to gain control over others. Other explanations have been that with male migration from rural areas, women have been awarded a great deal of power and influence in the community. They are thought to use witchcraft because they have so much power.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      Gender Equality Commission can provide advice regarding witchcraft-related crimes.
      Tel: (011) 403 7182
      E-mail: cgeinfo@cge.org.za
      Web site: http://CGE.org.za

14.3 DEALING WITH SEXUAL AND CHILD ABUSE – THE ROLE OF THE EDUCATOR

14.3.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • The Criminal Procedure Act, Act 51 of 1977 as amended [CPA]
  • The Employment of Educators Act (No. 76 of 1998) [EEA]
  • The Children’s Act 38 of 2005 as amended [CA]
  • South African Council for Educators Act 31 of 2000 [SACE]
  • The Sexual Offences Act 32 of 2007 [SOA]
  • Judicial Matters Second Amendment Act 43 of 2013, Government Gazette 37255 of 2014 [JMA]

 

GUIDELINES

14.3.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Dealing with Sexual and Child Abuse – The Role of the Educator

  • The Employment of Educators Act 76 of 1998 determines:
    • In Section 17 (1) that committing an act of sexual assault on a learner or student or having a sexual relationship with a learner of the school where he or she is employed, is an act of serious misconduct. Section 17(2) determines that any allegations in this regard must be dealt with according to the disciplinary code and procedures provided for in Schedule 2 of the Act; and
    • in Section 11 (1) (e) that an educator may be discharged from service on account of misconduct.
  • The South African Council for Educators Act 31 of 2000 :
    • The Code of Professional Ethics (formulated in terms of Act 31 of 2000; South African Council for Educators Act 31 of 2000 Code of Professional Ethics 3.6, 3.8 and 3.9) determines that an educator refrains from improper physical conduct with learners, from any form of sexual harassment of learners and from any form of sexual relationship with learners at a school; and
    • The name of an educator can be removed from the register if the educator was found guilty of a breach of the Code of Professional Ethics (Chapter 3 Section 23 (1) (c)).
  • The Children’s Act 38 of 2005 as amended by Act 41 of 2007 determines as follows:
    • Abuse means any form of harm or ill-treatment deliberately inflicted on a child, and includes:
      (a) assaulting a child or inflicting any form of deliberate injury to a child;
      (b) sexually abusing a child or allowing a child to be sexually abused;bullying by another child;
      (c) a labour practice that exploits a child; or
      (d) exposing or subjecting a child to behaviour that may harm the child psychologically or emotionally.
    • Sexual abuse, In relation to a child, means:
      (a) sexually molesting (The general meaning of ‘molesting’ regarding children is  to force  unwanted sexual attentions on a child) or assaulting (Assaulting can be a physical or verbal attack or a thread of bodily harm) a child or allowing a child to be sexually molested or assaulted;
      (b) encouraging, inducing or forcing a child to be used for the sexual gratification of another person;
      (c) using a child in or deliberately exposing a child to sexual activities or pornography; or
      (d) procuring or allowing a child to be procured for commercial sexual exploitation or in any way participating or assisting in the commercial sexual exploitation of a child
    • Mandatory reporting of abused or neglected children:
      The Children’s Act expands the list of professionals who are legally obliged to report abuse of children, but limits what must be reported:

      • sexual abuse
      • physical abuse causing injury; and
      • deliberate neglect.

Section 110 reads:

“(1) Any correctional official, dentist, homeopath, immigration official, labour inspector, legal practitioner, medical practitioner, midwife, minister of religion, nurse, occupational therapist, physiotherapist, psychologist, religious leader, social service professional, social worker, speech therapist, teacher, traditional health practitioner, traditional leader or member of staff or volunteer worker at a partial care facility, drop-in centre or child and youth care centre who on reasonable grounds concludes that a child has been abused in a manner causing physical injury, sexually abused or deliberately neglected, must report that conclusion in the prescribed form [Form 22] to a designated child protection organisation (Child Welfare South Africa, the Department of Social Development (DoSD), or the police) the provincial department of social development or a police official.”  [Emphasis and footnote added]

If a teacher comes across a child that shows signs of having been abused or neglected then the matter must be reported after taking certain factors into account. A conclusion that a child has been abused or neglected must be substantiated and, if the report was made in good faith, the person reporting will not be liable to civil action based on the report.

The General Regulations Regarding Children (Broad risk assessment framework to guide decision-making in provision of designated child protection services): The aim of the broad risk assessment framework contemplated in Section 142(c) of the Children’s Act 2005  is to provide guidelines for identification of children who are being abused or deliberately neglected and the assessment of risk factors to support a conclusion of abuse and neglect on reasonable grounds as contemplated in Section 110 of the Act.

Indicators set out in the Regulations:

  • Indicators of physical abuse:
    “… including bruises in any part of the body; grasp marks on the arms, chest or face; variations in bruising colour; black eyes; belt marks; tears around or behind the ears; cigarette or other burn marks; cuts; welts; fractures; head injuries; convulsions that are not due to epilepsy or high temperature; drowsiness; irregular breathing; vomiting; pain; fever or restlessness”;
  • Emotional and behavioural indicators of physical, psychological or sexual abuse:
    “… including aggression; physical withdrawal when approached by adults; anxiety; irritability; persistent fear of familiar people or situations; sadness; suicidal actions or behaviour; self-mutilation; obsessive behaviour; neglect of personal hygiene; age of child demonstrating socially inappropriate sexual behaviour or knowledge; active or passive bullying; unwillingness or fearfulness to undress or wearing layers of clothing”;
  • Developmental indicators of physical, psychological or sexual abuse:
    “… including failure to thrive; failure to meet physical and psychological developmental norms; withdrawal; stuttering; unwillingness to partake in group activities; clumsiness; lack of coordination or orientation or observable thriving of children away from their home environment”;
  • Indicators of deliberate neglect:
    “… including underweight; reddish scanty hair; sores around the mouth; slight water retention on the palm or in the legs; extended or slightly hardened abdomen; thin and dry skin; dark pigmentation of skin, especially on extremities; abnormally thin muscles; developmental delay; lack of fatty tissue; disorientation; intellectual disability; irritability; lethargy, withdrawal, bedsores and contractures”;
  • “… a disclosure of abuse or deliberate neglect by the child”; or
  • “… a statement relating to a pattern or history of abuse or deliberate neglect from a witness relating to the abuse of the child”.
  • The conclusion must be based on an assessment of the “total context of the child’s situation”. This means that focus must not only be given to one factor or indicator but different things must be taken into account to formulate a conclusion of abuse or neglect. The child’s total situation needs to be assessed and understood (See Children’s Act Guide for Child and Youth care workers First Edition January 2011; Chapter 7 General Provisions section 54).

Educators must also be aware that the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act, 2007 (Chapter 7 General Provinsions section 54) determines that any person who has knowledge that a sexual offence has been committed against a child must report such knowledge immediately to a police official.

The report should be made on Form 22 and sent to one of the three agencies (Child Welfare South Africa, the Department of Social Development (DoSD), or the police).

Once a report has been made to one of these three agencies, a social worker should be appointed to investigate the case and make recommendations on the kind of support needed by the child or family.

The Children’s Act requires government departments to work together to provide a holistic range of services. Due to the high level of demand for protection and prevention services it can take a long time before children receive the help they need from a social service professional (See Children’s Act Guide for Child and Youth care workers First Edition January 2011).

Failure to report is an offence with a penalty of a fine or imprisonment, or both (See Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act, 32 of 2007 Chapter 7 General Provinsions Section 54).

14.3.3Further Guidelines for the Development of School Policy on Dealing with Sexual and Child Abuse

  1. The difficulty of dealing with abuse
    • Most violence against children is perpetrated within a child’s familiar environment by people they know: This makes it very difficult to deal with the problem. Crimes such as rape, incest, child abuse, and sexual assault may be described as ‘domestic violence’ when they occur within a family, or within any structure that functions, or previously functioned, as a family. Often, adults, such as educators, who spend a lot of time with children are faced with the problem of attempting to intervene in these cases of sexual abuse. Educators, in particular, tend to build special relationships with learners and in those special relationships of mutual trust learners may rely on educators for help.
    • An unfortunate aspect of dealing with domestic violence is that the victim is not always willing to lay a charge against the perpetrator. The most common reasons for this are fear of intimidation, and the controlling behaviour the perpetrator has on the abused child. A child is helpless and powerless in this situation.
    • Sometimes a mother may believe her abused child, but has limited options and/or resources to deal with the problem. Possible reasons why women and their children may stay in an abusive family:
      • Financial dependence on the abuser;
      • Custody and maintenance problems for children;
      • Love for the abuser, and the hope that he will stop the abuse;
      • Having nowhere else to go;
      • Religious and cultural beliefs;
      • Pride.
    • Schools are often sites of violence for youth, and this shapes a particular role that educators at schools are expected to play. Educators are called upon to be pro-active in:
      • watching out for signs of abuse;
      • recording the abuse;
      • reporting the abuse; and
      • following the case up with the relevant authorities.
    • Not only are educators the ones who see learners every day and often provide perhaps the one stable factor in a child’s life, educators themselves are not exempt from being perpetrators of violence. This places an even more difficult task on other educators to expose guilty educators.
      To meet this challenging but very important role in reducing abuse and violence, what skills and knowledge do educators need?

      • Educators need to be aware of the role they are expected to play as educators, in the reduction of violence and/or sexual abuse at school and in the home.
      • Educators need to have a better understanding of what sexual abuse is.
      • Educators need to be able to look out for the signs that a learner is being abused, and need to know how to go about verifying that abuse is in fact being perpetrated.
      • Educators need to know what is expected of them in reporting the abuse, and what process to follow once they know a learner is being abused.
      • Educators need to know about interventions at school that will prevent further abuse from taking place and that will begin to address the underlying causes of sexual abuse.
    • In other sections, we outline indicators that educators should be aware of when looking for signs of abuse or violence. In relation to bullying, gangs, truancy, racism, guns and weapons, substance abuse and witchcraft, we suggest ways of dealing with the problems at school, and at a community partnership level. However, when educators are expected to deal with child and/or sexual abuse, perpetrated both at home and at school, the role that they are expected to play, is slightly different. We will outline this role in more detail.
  2. Educators need to be aware of the role they are expected to play in the reduction of violence and/or sexual abuse
    Educators need to take a pro-active role in identifying victims of abuse and in assisting them to deal with the abuse. Do not be passive or quiet about abuse. If you suspect that a learner is being abused, act on your assumption and investigate the matter further immediately. Schools and educators need to take responsibility for acting effectively and timeously in situations of abuse.
  3. Educators need to have a better understanding of sexual abuse
    • A child is sexually abused when another person, who is sexually mature, involves the child in a sexual activity that the older person expects to lead to sexual arousal. Child sexual abuse generally consists of three components:
      • Exploitation of a child;
      • The use of coercion; and
      • Gratification gained by the abuser.
        Such abuse takes many different forms. The most common sexually abusive behaviour inflicted on children is:
      • Verbal abuse.
      • Nudity, undressing, or exposing.
      • Covertly watching a nude child.
      • Kissing in an intimate way.
      • Fondling (touching the child in a sexual way).
      • Interfering with a child in a sexual manner.
      • Forcing a child to engage in any sexual act.
      • Sexual intercourse with a child.
      • Pornography (exposing a child to this and/or forcing a child to pose for pornographic material).
    • In an educational institution sexual abuse can also include the promise of improved marks or promotion in exchange for some form of sexual activity.
    • Educators have raped, sexually assaulted and otherwise sexually abused girls. Sometimes reinforcing sexual demands with threats of physical violence or corporal punishment, educators have sexually propositioned girls and verbally degraded them using highly sexualised language. At times, sexual relations between educators and learners did not involve an overt use of force or threats of force; rather, educators would abuse their authority by offering better grades or money to pressure girls for sexual favours or “dating relationships”.
    • Rape is one of the cruellest forms of violence in our society. The violation not only causes physical pain and harm to the victim, but long-lasting psychological harm. Rape irrevocably alters the way in which the victim perceives the world, herself, her environment and her safety. In most cases the complainant is a woman or girl, but men and boys are also victims of this violation.
    • There are many different ways in which women and girls are sexually abused. Common words used to describe this abuse include: ‘rape’, ‘date rape’, ‘gang rape’, ‘being forced to have sex’, ‘sexual violence’, ‘being abused’, ‘flashing’, ‘unwanted touching’. In this manual, the terms sexual violence or sexual assault are used to refer to all the ways – from physical force to verbal threats – in which a woman or girl may be made to take part in any kind of sexual act/s despite the fact that she does not want to (i.e. against her will).
  4. Educators need to be able to look out for the signs that a learner is being abused, and need to know how to go about verifying that abuse is in fact being perpetrated
    It is not possible for an educator to be certain that a learner is being abused, by identifying one or two indicators. Educators know their learners; they know how each learner usually behaves. When you see a change of behaviour in a learner, then you need to suspect that something is wrong. The list that follows consists of signs that may indicate that a learner is being sexually abused. Although these signs are not conclusive, a child who displays some of these symptoms, alongside a change in their usual behaviour, may be a suspected victim of child sexual abuse.

    • These include:
      • Unusual knowledge and/or curiosity about se;
      • Sexual acting out / masturbation
      • Withdrawal / being secretive;
      • Poor hygiene / compulsive washing;
      • Poor peer relationships;
      • Poor school performance;
      • Sudden unexplained gifts;
      • Sleep disruptions / nightmares / bed-wetting;
      • Acting out / aggressive / irritable;
      • Fear of undressing for sports etc;
      • Fearful of home life / running away;
      • Clinging / constant need for reassurance;
      • Tearfulness;
      • Regression;
      • Suicide attempts.
    • If you think that a learner is being abused, act immediately. You should record the learner’s behaviour over a few days or weeks. Write down behaviour changes and the learner’s reactions to classmates and other educators. You might try and speak with one of the learner’s friends, but keep this interview confidential.
      If you have a close relationship with the learner, you should try and speak to him or her.
      If the learner ends up confiding in you about the abuse, your first reaction to her confession will be very important in her healing journey. You need to tell the learner that:

      • I believe you;
      • I am glad you told me;
      • I am sorry this happened to you. You are very brave to tell me;
      • It is not your fault;
      • I need to speak to other adults in order to help you, but I will tell you everything that I am going to do and say.
    • The role of the educator is one of reporting the abuse and supporting the learner – not investigating the case. It is not your role to ask the learner for physical signs of abuse. Under no circumstances should you examine the learner. This needs to be done by a nurse or a doctor. You must tell the learner that you need to involve other adults to help stop the abuse. Give the learner options; she may or may not want to report the incident to the police. Inform the principal. He or she should, in consultation with you and an experienced social worker, (and the school governing body if appropriate) decide on how to handle the case.
    • Crisis intervention: rape
      In the case where you, as an educator, are the first person to see a learner who has been raped very recently, you should tell the learner that she must keep all the clothing that she is/was wearing at the time of the sexual assault and must not wash herself, no matter how badly she may want to. She must put her clothes into a paper bag or wrap them in newspaper. She must not place them into any kind of plastic container or packet, as this can interfere chemically with the evidence. Hair, blood, and/or semen may be found on her body or her clothes. If the survivor decides to report the attack, these samples will become crucial evidence against her attacker/s.

      • Warn the learner not to drink anything (even water), wash her mouth or take medicine before a doctor examines her, particularly if the attacker has forced the woman or girl to perform oral sex. The sooner a doctor examines her, the greater the chance that she/he will find strong evidence on the victim of her attacker, such as hair, blood or semen.
      • Discuss with the victim whether she would like to report the attack to the police. Many women and girls find it difficult to go to the police and she may not feel like making such a decision so soon after an attack.
  5. Educators need to know what is expected of them in reporting the abuse, and what process to follow once they know a learner is being abused
    If you, the principal, the social worker and the victim herself decide to report the abuse, you need to know what to expect.
    Your school needs to let the Department of Education’s district office know about the abuse. However, do not wait for a response from the district office: go ahead and report the abuse to the police.
    When a survivor arrives at a police station, she must inform the police officer at the charge desk that she wants to report a rape or sexual assault. A police officer is not allowed to refuse to open a docket, or tell the victim that she cannot lay a charge, or tell the victim that she does not have enough proof to do so.

    • Both the police and the South African Law Commission’s Report on Women and Sexual Offences in South Africa (1985) have acknowledged that a District Surgeon need not take the sexual assault survivor’s full statement before her medical examination. In fact, as medical evidence is crucial in sexual offences, the medical examination should take priority over the taking of the statement. It has also been argued that a woman or girl is in a much better position  (physically and emotionally) to make a full, detailed and comprehensive  statement once she has been examined and has had the opportunity to wash  herself and change into a new set of clothing. A full statement should only be taken by the investigating officer once the sexual-assault complainant has recuperated sufficiently to do so.
    • A survivor can report the incident at any police station. The station where the offence is reported must open the docket (investigation case file) and treat the offence as if it happened in their area. Once the initial investigation has been completed (the first statement has been taken and the medical examination has been done), the docket must then be sent to the station in whose jurisdiction the sexual assault occurred.
    • If a survivor does not want to go to a police station, she can contact the station telephonically and ask them to send a patrol car to her – wherever she may be. In certain areas, however, the police may not be able to do this immediately – they may be too busy or might not have enough patrol cars. If this is the case, the victim may have a long wait before the police can come to her. This is a problem that is common in township or rural areas. If the survivor has her own transport, this may be quicker. If she has no transport, it is advisable that she or the person who is making the call on her behalf, especially if the survivor is injured, emphasises the seriousness of the assault so as to make sure that the police arrive as soon as possible. Alternatively, an ambulance should be called to transport the woman or girl to the hospital. The hospital staff will then contact the police.
    • It is a survivor’s right to have a relative, friend or counsellor with her when she reports a sexual assault, and when a doctor examines her. It should be someone with whom she feels comfortable and who does not inhibit what she says. The support person cannot be a potential witness to the sexual assault incident. This is because her or his presence may influence the contents of the survivor’s statement and may result in her or his credibility being questioned at a later stage in court.
    • It is the survivor’s right to give her statement to the police in a private place. If a survivor finds it easier to talk to a police officer without friends or family listening to her, she may request to be on her own when she does so. If a police officer wants to take her statement in the charge office in front of other people, she can ask to move to a more private place.
    • A survivor is entitled to ask to speak to a female police officer. If there are no women on duty, she may ask an available police officer to find a policewoman, although this usually involves a longer wait. Some police stations have staff members who are specially trained to deal with victims of sexual assault.
    • The survivor has the right to make her statement in her home language.
    • If the police officer who is taking her statement does not speak her language, she/he must find someone to translate the survivor’s statement. If a woman or girl signs a statement that has been translated from her home language, she must ensure that the translation is accurate before she appears in court. If it is not accurate, the survivor should make a second statement to either the Investigating Officer or to the prosecutor, explaining the reasons for the inaccuracies of the first statement.
    • If nobody at the police station speaks the home language of the survivor, she has the right to ask the officer on duty to find either another police officer or someone from the court who can speak her language. She will then have to wait while such a person is located.
  6. Giving a Statement
    When a woman or girl reports a sexual offence to the police, her report is given a special number, called an OB (Occurrence Book) number. The OB number is very important, because it serves as proof that she reported the assault to the police. When reporting a sexual assault, a survivor has two options: to put the sexual assault on record, or to lay a charge.
  7. Putting the incident on record
    It is important for the survivor to tell the police clearly if she wants the sexual assault to be put on record only, and does not want the police to investigate the case any further. If the girl is under 18, the case will be investigated. A woman who is 18 years or older can choose to have the incident recorded without an investigation. She will have to sign an affidavit (sworn statement) to this effect. Once the survivor has made her statement, the police officer must refer her to a relevant organisation within that area for counselling and support.
    Where sex occurs with a girl under 16 even if the man claims she consented, the law will prosecute the man as if the girl had not consented.
  8. Laying a charge
    If the woman or girl wants to lay a charge, the first officer receiving the report will open a docket. The docket will be given a criminal administration number (CAS number), which the complainant must write down. This is called a ‘skeleton docket’ and is necessary in some situations, for example, where the alleged perpetrator is at large and a description of him by the complainant may lead to a quick arrest. The police officer must then contact an Investigating Officer as soon as possible. If a woman or girl lays a charge, the police will investigate her case and she may have to go to court.
  9. Making the statement
    • According to SAPS guidelines, an initial statement must be taken, then the medical examination should be done, followed by an in-depth statement that must be taken once the sexual assault survivor has recovered sufficiently (depending on circumstances, ideally from 24 to 36 hours after the assault). However, most often the police will try to get a very detailed story from the survivor when they first speak to her, so that they can start trying to find the person/s who attacked her straight away. If she is badly hurt or very upset, the police may decide to take a short statement from her initially followed by a longer statement afterwards.
    • The sexual assault survivor will be asked a number of questions, ranging from her name, address, and occupation to the details of the assault. The police officer must write down everything she says in what is called a statement. The complainant may also choose to write the statement herself, or ask a friend to write it for her. The police officer will then rewrite this statement in her/his own writing.
    • It is important that the victim describes what has happened to her in as much detail as possible. This can be difficult and upsetting, and it may take a long time. However, it is essential to give the police as much information as possible. The sexual assault survivor should tell the police the whole truth about the incident/s – even if she is afraid that certain details might be used to discriminate against her (for instance, the clothes she was wearing, drugs or alcohol she consumed, or kissing the accused prior to the assault, etc). This fear arises from myths about rape, which are perpetuated in society. If the survivor is a credible witness, and her telling the truth from the beginning is the best guarantee of this, there is much more likelihood of a successful prosecution.
  10. Checking the statement
    • Once the survivor has finished making her statement, the police officer will ask her to read it and then sign it. Alternatively, the survivor may ask the police officer, or someone else, to read her statement back to her, slowly. The survivor must then initial every page and sign it at the end. It is very important to make sure that everything that happened to the victim is written in exactly the way that she told it. If there are mistakes, or if she is not happy with the contents of the statement, she may request that changes be made before she signs it.
      Remember
      It is crucial for the complainant not to sign her statement until she is completely satisfied with the way it has been written. This statement may be used against her in court.
      If the survivor remembers any information, which she did not mention in her original statement, she must inform the police and have it added to the statement.
      The sexual assault survivor’s statement is extremely important: it is the main article of proof that the court will use to try and win her case and the police use the statement as the basis for their investigation of the case.
    • The complainant has the right to obtain a copy of her statement. The police can use carbon paper to make a copy of her statement. In this case she must ask for a copy of her statement before the police officer starts to write it down. If she is not given a copy, she must request one. If the police station has neither carbon paper nor a photocopying machine, the complainant should arrange to fetch a copy of her statement within the next week.
  11. Ensuring a conviction
    • South African law does not give mention to “sexual assault” specifically, but deals with different kinds of crimes such as rape, indecent assault, and incest. A man who sexually assaults a woman or girl can be charged with one or more of these crimes. If the authorities decide that there is not enough proof to charge a man with rape or attempted rape, then they can charge him with a less serious crime like indecent assault. Less serious crimes have lighter sentences (such as a fine, or shorter period in prison).
    • Sometimes a man may be charged with less serious crimes than those a woman or girl has reported, making the woman or girl feel angry or disappointed. A small consolation is that a man can be found guilty of the less serious crimes, even when the proof is not strong. This means that there is a good chance that a man who has sexually assaulted a woman or girl can be punished in some way; even if she thinks that the punishment is not severe enough for what he has done. When reporting the incident you should keep this in mind. Always ask the police to charge the man with indecent assault as well as the main charge.
  12. Attempted Rape
    This is when a man tries (or attempts) to rape a woman or girl. This means that he tries to place his penis into, or against her sexual organs, but does not succeed at doing so, because the woman or girl fights him off, or someone comes along, or something happens and he is stopped.
  13. Indecent Assault
    The law describes indecent assault as “an assault, which is in itself, of an indecent character”. Acts of indecent assault include a man or woman interfering with a learner’s body in a sexual manner.
  14. Incest
    Incest is when a man and a woman (or girl), who are prevented from marrying by law because they are family, have sex together. Following this law, it is a crime for a girl’s (or woman’s) father, stepfather, grandfather, uncle, brother, cousin or adoptive father to have sex with her.
  15. Crimen Injuria
    The law describes crimen injuria as the “unlawful, intentional and serious infringement of the dignity or privacy of another”. A person’s dignity is rooted in self-respect, peace of mind, and privacy. Crimen injuria occurs when a person sends you pornography, makes rude suggestions to you, or spies on you (a “Peeping Tom” or voyeur) when you are undressing.
  16. Vital information
    Before leaving the police station, you should ensure that you and the learner write down or have copies of the following because you will need this information to follow up on the case:

    • The OB and CAS numbers of her case (these numbers are essential if she wants to find out anything about her case from the police or the court).
    • A copy of her statement, or a time when she can fetch one.
    • The telephone number of the police station.
    • The name and serial number of the officer who took her statement.
    • The name and serial number of the officer who will investigate her case (if the police are unable to give her this name when she reports the case, they must provide her with the name and contact number of an officer who can provide her with this information the following day).
    • A letter from the police, which the complainant can hand to any police officer if she sees the person/s who assaulted her, so that the police officer can then arrest him/them.
    • The name and phone number of the CID (Criminal Investigation Division) Branch Commander (this person is the head of all the investigating police officers).
  17. Educators need to know about interventions at school that will prevent further abuse from taking place and that will begin to address the underlying causes of sexual abuse
    • Intervention programmes to prevent abuse
      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Many children are unaware of the fact that they are being abused. The most common approach to abuse is through education. By educating children about what abuse is, what places to avoid, what to do if they are abused, and where to go for help, abuse can be both prevented and addressed when it does happen. Educators who are knowledgeable about child abuse, and have a good relationship with their learners. They should also be familiar with the process of reporting the abuse.
    • Dealing with common problems
      Common Problems Solutions That Have Worked
      When children are abused, the abuser often threatens the child or their family to ensure that they do not tell anyone about the abuse. Children need to be educated about their rights and at the same time be assured that the school will treat information as confidential. In addition, they can be told of anonymous services like Childline and the Safe Schools National toll-free call line.
      Few children feel comfortable with telling an adult about abuse. Look for less obvious signs of abuse like symptoms listed above. If there is any concern that a child is being abused, the child should be sent for counselling and, if necessary, medical treatment.
      Parents deny the abuse. Some parents are perpetrators of abuse and will therefore deny it, other parents are afraid that their security in the home will be threatened by the abuser. The school needs to work with parents to reduce child abuse.
      Learners do not know how to react if in a compromised situation. Learning self-defence and building confidence.
    • How can victim empowerment build a healthy school?
      • Victim rights apply to learners and educators at school. The way in which an incident of crime or violence is handled at school will affect the way in which both the offender and the victim think about crime, justice, authority and equity in the future.
      • Educators, Representative Councils of learners and school governing bodies play an important role in ensuring that appropriate action is taken after an act of violence, and that the victim is empowered to move on without anger.
      • Educators and learners do not need to deal with the problem of crime and victim empowerment at school on their own, but can draw on the Network of Victim Empowerment Practitioners. Serving the needs of victimised youth is essential not only to the vision of a safe and peaceful school but also of a safe and peaceful society.
      • Empowered victims help with police investigations by reporting the crime and making a statement. Once a suspect is arrested, their evidence helps decide whether or not bail should be granted. They help with the prosecution, conviction and sentencing of the offender by being a witness for the State, in order to ensure that the offender cannot commit any more crimes.
      • Empowered victims are less likely to continue the cycle of violence. When a learner at school feels as if he or she has been empowered to contribute to the successful conviction of an offender, she/he feels that justice has been done – and is not left with feelings of anger and revenge.
        What are the basic steps to victim empowerment?
        Step one: Brainstorm why victim empowerment might be helpful in building your school as a safe and healthy school.
        Step two: Find out about community-based victim support initiatives in your area (see whom to contact at the end of this section).
        Step three: Set up a committee of concerned parents, educators and learners who are willing to work as school representatives on the community-based victim support initiatives.
        Step four: Let the school community know how they can access these community initiatives to give support in reporting and dealing with crime and violence.
    • What do community-based victim support initiatives offer?
      The police official who takes the victim’s statement, the investigating officer, the health worker or educator who first learns about the incident, or even the prosecutor who will take the case to court, can all refer victims to Victim Support Initiatives in their area.
    • Victims can access victim support themselves. Services may differ from area to area but generally they offer:
      • A shoulder to lean on and an ear to listen.
      • Help in contacting family or friends.
      • Help in dealing with victims’ feelings after the violence or crime.
      • An explanation of the process that needs to be followed in reporting the crime.
      • Help in communicating with the SAPS and later with the prosecutor.
      • Practical help and advice to avoid further problems.
      • Referral to a professional counselling service if the victim was traumatised by his/her experience.
  18. Helpful National Contact Numbers
    • Childline
      Offers counselling and support to victims.
      Crisis line: 08000 555 55
    • LifeLine
      Offers 24 hour telephone counselling service, HIV/Aids, trauma, rape, youth counselling, training and outreach programmes.
      Tel: (011) 728 1347, (021) 461 1111, (031) 232323
      E-mail: lifelinecounselling@gmail.com
      Web site: www.lifeline.co.za
    • Agisanang Domestic Abuse Prevention and Training (ADAPT)
      Deals with domestic and sexual abuse, youth who experience abuse.
      Web site: Agisanang Domestic Abuse Prevention and Training
      Tel: (011) 885 3332
    • NICRO
      Offers community victim support, youth development and diversion, and trauma counselling.
      Tel: (021) 422 1225
      E-mail: nicro@wn.apc.org
      Web site: www.nicro.org.za
  19. Learner Pregnancy
    Guidelines for managing learner pregnancy cases are provided at Chapter 14.10

14.4 SKILLS THAT BUILD RESILIENCE

14.4.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • Employment of Educators Act 76 of 1998 [EEA]

14.4.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Skills that Build Resilience

This chapter outlines pro-active interventions that schools can take to prevent violence, crime and abuse and to promote safe schools and well-being.
There are many children in South Africa and the rest of the world who face difficult and uncomfortable situations on a daily basis, but who do not follow a path of violence or crime. What makes some youth and children turn to violence while others from the same community do not? Research conducted here and overseas shows that children who do not choose a path of violence or crime, even if they are exposed to violence regularly, have particular “tools” that help them to choose a non-violent pathway. We call these tools “resilience factors” – the tools that help youth to resist a violent pathway and choose a non-violent one.
Some of these resilience factors include a feeling of competency at school, feeling supported and cared for, having a strong sense of self-esteem, having values, being good at problem solving and at communicating effectively, having the confidence to deal with diversity, and being involved in community based or group activities.
Important life skills include the ability to take control, to make plans and decisions, to change personal direction, to ask for help, and to stand back and reflect. Importantly, these are also the skills that enable people to give to others and to their communities. With giving comes a sense of belonging and an increase in self-esteem. An increase in self-esteem results in positive behaviour.
In summary, resilience tools:

  • Help you to cope better in life;
  • Help you to say NO when you don’t what to do something;
  • Enable you to do more things for yourself;
  • Instil a sense of pride from doing things yourself;
  • Help you make decisions that are good for you and your community;
  • Give you insight into how the world works;
  • Enable you to make discoveries about yourself and the world;
  • Enable you to make better choices for yourself and your community;
  • Instil a sense of self-respect and self-esteem.
  1. Skills that build resilience
    • Communication skills
      How do good communication skills help to build resilience?

      • Good communicators manage effective and successful social interactions that bring quality, meaning and satisfaction to their lives.
      • Communication skills facilitate social acceptance, integration and involvement with others.
      • Communication skills reduce the chance of interpersonal conflict turning into violent conflict.
      • Good communicators are able to express their needs and feelings – a first step in getting those needs met.
    • What does poor communication lead to?
      • Feelings of powerlessness and isolation. If people are unable to express their needs and their feelings, they may turn to activities that make them feel even worse about themselves.
      • Introspection and narrow-mindedness.
      • Barriers to making contact with others.
    • How can learners be helped to communicate more effectively?
      • In the classroom:
        • Be aware of the learners who do not speak often. Encourage them to communicate with you in private and help to build their confidence.
        • Don’t let the same learners talk all the time.
        • Help learners to recognise the difference between good and poor communication; rephrase some of their questions and comments in a supportive manner.
        • Ask learners to role-play being a good listener and a bad listener.
        • Ask learners to role-play different ways of speaking about their needs and their feelings.
      • Through intervention programmes:
        Following are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

        Aim Method Useful Resources
        To get learners to think about how they communicate. Ask learners to answer three questions:

        • Why is communication important?
        • When is communication good?
        • When is communication bad?

        Discuss the answers and develop a checklist for good communication.

        An educator who is able to communicate well and with whom the learners feel comfortable.
        To get learners to realise the effects of good and bad communication. Ask learners to answer two questions:
        When communication works it leaves me with feelings of . . .
        When communication does not work it leaves me with feelings of . . .
        An educator who is able to communicate well and with whom the learners feel comfortable.
        To get learners to practice listening skills. Divide learners into pairs. Ask one person in the pair to talk to their partner for about five minutes about something they find interesting. The listener should help the person speaking by asking some questions but do no more than that. After five minutes ask each listener to tell his or her partner what he/she was talking about. Go around the group and ask the “tellers” to give the listeners a mark out of ten, based on how well they thought the listeners had listened. Get them to motivate this mark by giving examples. Then change the listeners around and repeat the exercise. An educator who is able to communicate well and with whom the learners feel comfortable, and who is able to manage group interactions well.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      Work out a set of questions, for example:

      • Has communication in your classroom improved since you started using the exercises?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring how communication in the classroom might have improved, you will need to keep a record of examples that show how communication has improved.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success.
        • A plan for answering these questions.
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      Communication skills are one part of general life skills. There are organisations that you can contact who will deal with communication skills as part of life skills.
  2. Alternatives to violence
    • Finding alternatives to violence requires certain skills. How do these skills build resilience in learners?
      • Learners come to understand the nature of conflict and violence, and how conflict can escalate into violence when certain behavioural choices are made.
      • Learners come to understand that violence is linked to power, and explore alternative ways of testing and expressing their own power.
      • Learners develop skills to respond to violence with non-violence.
      • Learners develop skills to intervene in violence in a non-violent manner.
      • Learners develop skills to speak to one another in a manner that is not threatening or aggressive.
      • Learners develop the ability to get in touch with their own feelings of violence and aggression, and in this way begin to make choices as to how they act out their anger and insecurity.
      • Learners develop better communication skills and respond to one another’s concerns and interests.
    • What can violent interaction lead to?
      • When all disputes and arguments are settled by resorting to violence, learners begin to believe that violence is the only way to resolve conflict.
      • Violent interactions inside and outside the school premises often lead to revenge attacks; it becomes increasingly difficult to break the cycle of violence.
      • Violence is often linked to power: Learners who use violence may feel powerful but this power is without substance and can be taken away.
      • Educators who use violence or corporal punishment in the classroom are sending out a message that violence is OK.
    • How can learners be encouraged to practice principles of non-violence?
      • In the classroom
        • Don’t allow learners to be violent in the classroom. But remember not to use violence to tell your learners not to use violence!
        • Encourage learners to talk to one another about their feelings of anger in a way that help them to find solutions. Don’t be afraid of anger: encourage expression in a constructive manner.
        • Discuss the impact and effects that violence has on young people and children – on their self-esteem, their emotional well-being, and their sense of safety.
        • Introduce role models such as sports stars, politicians and music stars – people who have achieved power and status in ways that have not involved violence.
      • Through intervention programmes
        Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

        Aim Method Useful Resources
        To help learners resolve conflicts without using violence. Some schools select learners to be trained as peer counsellors. These peer counsellors are given skills to intervene in conflicts between learners in a manner which encourages dialogue and which is non-violent. Peer mediators become well known in the school and are soon called upon whenever there is a threat of violence breaking out among learners. Learners who are well-respected and mature to act as mediators.
        To encourage educators to use alternative forms of discipline to corporal punishment. Today maintaining discipline in school is sometimes very difficult for educators. There are, however, successful alternatives to corporal punishment. Discipline should not be viewed in terms of severe punishment or violence. This has been shown NOT to help with changing the behaviour of learners. View discipline as a means of upholding expectations for a code of decent conduct. Provide recognition and reinforcement for newly learned skills and behaviour. Have appropriate expectations for all learners and help to provide learners with the opportunity, support and encouragement to meet those expectations. Educators who are well informed about effective forms of discipline, and who are flexible and sensitive in their use of discipline. The booklet “Alternatives to Corporal Punishment: The Learning Experience,” Department of Education (2000).
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Has violent interaction between learners in your school decreased since you introduced the peer mediation programme?
        • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring how violence has decreased, you will need to keep a record of incidences of violence over a period of six months.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success;
        • A plan for answering these questions;
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      NICRO Parents Programmes; Family Group Conferencing
      Tel: (021) 422 1225
      E-mail: nicro@wn.apc.org
      Web site: www.nicro.org.za
  3. Improving self-esteem
    • How does high self-esteem build resilience?
      • Self-esteem is sometimes described as armour against the world. Young people who feel good about themselves find it easier to handle conflicts and resist negative pressure;
      • Young people with high self-esteem will enjoy social contact and group activities;
      • They will voice discontent without belittling others or themselves. They will say, “I don’t understand this” instead of “I’m an idiot”.
    • What are the effects of low self-esteem?
      • People who have low self-esteem battle to cope with challenges and have many self-critical thoughts;
      • They become passive, withdrawn and depressed;
      • They may not want to try new things or may give up easily;
      • They are pessimistic.
    • How can learners be encouraged to build self-esteem?
      • In the classroom:
        • Praise learners for effort as well as for tasks well done. Focus on the effort and completion rather than on the outcome. For example, say, “Well, you didn’t make the soccer team but I’m really proud of the effort you put into it”.
        • Be a good role model. Learners will mirror educators who are overly harsh on themselves.
        • Encourage the learner to be realistic about situations. If a learner struggles with maths he/she may say, “I’m a bad student”. The educator should respond by saying, “You are a good student. Maths is just something you need to spend more time on”. Make sure your feedback is positive and accurate. Praise for good decisions (walking away rather than fighting with a fellow learner) will encourage the learner to make the right choice again.
        • Encourage learners to become involved in constructive activities. These are activities that encourage co-operation. For instance, in mentoring programmes older learners offer support to new or younger learners.
      • Through intervention programmes
        Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

        Aim Method Useful Resources
        To help learners appreciate the importance of encouraging good self-esteem in others. Divide learners into small groups to discuss what self-esteem is and the effect that being belittled or put down has on them. Get them think to about good and bad ways of giving another person feedback. An educator who can manage group discussions and who is knowledgeable about building self-esteem.
        To help learners recognise the ways in which they put themselves down. Help learners think about what kinds of things make them feel bad about themselves and why. Get them to identify statements or feelings that  are inaccurate, for example, “I can’t do anything right”. An educator who can handle issues sensitively and with compassion.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Have learners begun to develop a more accurate perception of their own abilities?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring whether learners are evaluating their abilities more accurately, you will need to record the kinds of things that they say about themselves. It may be useful to get learners to record this themselves and monitor how it changes over time.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success;
        • A plan for answering these questions;
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
  4. Values and Moral Grounding
    • How do values and moral grounding build resilience?
      • By helping learners to make decisions about “right” and “wrong” in difficult situations;
      • By feeling part of a larger society that respects rights and responsibilities;
      • By making the learner feel valued and cared for.
    • What does a lack of values and moral grounding lead to?
      • An environment where educators and learners treat each other without respect, fairness or honesty;
      • A lack of understanding of what is considered right and wrong by society;
      • Relationships characterised by suspicion and a lack of honesty;
      • Learners have no religious, spiritual or political grounding.
    • How can educators help learners to develop morals and values?
      • In the classroom:
        • Educators have to treat learners and colleagues with respect. Children mirror the behaviour of adults;
        • Learners need to be given opportunities to take on roles that require moral responsibility, particularly in meeting the needs of the school. However, they should not equate moral responsibility with passive obedience;
        • Learners should be encouraged to develop social problem-solving skills, as this will instill the values that underpin non-confrontational interaction;
        • Learners could be encouraged to explore paths in politics, spirituality and religion.
      • Through intervention programmes
        Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

        Aim Method Useful Resources
        To create an understanding of what good morals are. Some approaches to character education include using people who are good moral role models. This may entail telling stories about role models such as Nelson Mandela, and discussing why he is a good example of a moral person and what his characteristics are. An educator who is familiar with historical and political figures and who could give examples of good role models.
        To get learners to reflect critically on their own moral beliefs and views. Learners can reflect on real life events and decide how best to respond to a particular situation. An educator who is sensitive to the emotions that this exercise may evoke in learners, and who will reinforce their own positive descriptions of themselves.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Have learners begun to reflect on the morality of their actions?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring whether learners have begun to consider the morality of their actions, you will need to record the behaviours that reflect good and bad morality and monitor these over time.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success;
        • A plan for answering these questions;
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
  5. Preparing learners to navigate the world of work
    • How does preparing learners to apply for jobs help them build resilience?
      • Learners feel confident when they move into the world of work because they know what to expect.
      • Learners are given information to help them gain and keep employment after school, increasing self-esteem and confidence.
      • Learners are aware of the norms and values that govern workplace interactions, making it easier for them to fit in.
      • Learners have the skills to perform jobs well, increasing self-esteem and confidence.
    • What does a lack of knowledge and skills about the world of work lead to?
      • Lack of confidence when applying for employment.
      • An inability to interact in a professional manner when in the workplace.
      • A lack of the necessary skills to work effectively.
      • Re-enforcement of a negative self-image.
      • Giving up on the “world of work” and turning to crime.
    • How can learners develop skills to effectively prepare them for employment?
      • In the classroom:
        • Educators need to be aware of their own manner of interacting and dressing at work, and set an example by acting in a professional manner towards their colleagues.
        • Educators must insist on appropriate interpersonal skills from learners. These would include respect for others, keeping to time, and being neat and tidy.
      • Through intervention programmes
        Here are a few examples of interventions that worked in schools. Some may be helpful but remember that each situation is unique and needs its own specific intervention.

        Aim Method Useful Resources
        To teach learners how to apply for work. Have a series of lessons in which learners go through the newspapers and look for job advertisements. Help them to draft a CV and write a formal letter of application. Have learners role play interviews with one another. An educator who is able to draft formal letters and CVs and has experience of interviews.
        Developing skills for particular jobs. Take part in a work experience programme. Arrange for learners to ‘work’ at local businesses and companies for a week so that they can see what work in a field of their interest is like. The co-operation of local industry and businesses.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        • Do learners know how to write a CV? Apply for a job? Prepare for an interview? Conduct a successful interview?
      • Next, decide what information is needed in order to answer these questions. For instance, if you are measuring whether learners can apply for jobs and write a CV, test them on their ability.
      • Each action or intervention needs:
        • One or two key questions that will indicate whether the intervention has been a success.
        • A plan for answering these questions.
        • An indication of how the results of the evaluation will be addressed.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
    • SchoolNet SA
      Helps design curricula and develop the capacity of educators and learners.
      Tel: (011) 403 3952
      E-mail: info@schoolnet.org.za
      Web site: http://www.schoolnet.org.za/
    • Democracy Development Programme (DDP)
      Youth empowerment and democracy education
      Tel: (031) 304 9305/6
      E-mail: ddpl@iafrica.com
      Web site: http://ddp.org.za/
    • Human Rights Watch Africa
      Offers advice on human rights, in particular the Bill of Rights.
      Web site: https://www.hrw.org/

14.5 PROMOTING HEALTHY SCHOOLS

14.5.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • The Employment of Educators Act (No. 76 of 1998) [EEA]

 

POLICY

  • National Policy on HIV/AIDS for Learners and Educators, Government Gazette No. 20372 of 10 August 1999 [20372/1999]

 

GUIDELINES

  • A message to schools on identifying and supporting learners at risk of depression and suicide [NG SUICIDE]

WesternCape

GUIDELINES

  • WCED Online: HIV/Aids Life Skills Programme  [Reference B9 WCED HIV]

 

CIRCULARS

  • Circular 0005 of 2017 Management of School Safe [Reference B9 0005/2017]

14.5.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Promoting Healthy Schools

This chapter outlines how schools can assist learners who are facing problems that affect their performance at school and sometimes even threaten their life.

Many young South African are exposed to learning environments that are potentially damaging to their physical, mental, social and emotional well-being. Because learners spend so much time at school it is crucial that these schools are transformed into places that not only promote intellectual development, but physical and emotional health and well-being.

The World Health Organisation defines a health-promoting school as follows:

The health-promoting school aims at achieving healthy lifestyles for the total school population by developing supportive environments conducive to the promotion of health. It offers opportunities for, and requires commitments to, the provision of a safe and health-enhancing social and physical environment’.

This unit will focus on two areas that, if left unattended, are likely to contribute to an unhealthy school environment, and, if properly addressed, can make a real difference to the physical and emotional health and wellbeing of learners and educators.  These areas are particularly relevant in South Africa today: HIV/AIDS and suicide. The fourth area of focus in this section looks at healthy alternatives – activities that young people can get involved in at school that will enhance their physical health and emotional, mental and social development.

  1. HIV/AIDS
    • How does knowledge of HIV/AIDS build a healthy school and child?
      There are two main issues to consider when dealing with AIDS at school. Firstly steps need to be taken to educate people about the virus and ways of staying healthy. Secondly learners must be educated so that the school community supports and nurtures those who are HIV positive rather than making them feel unwanted and alone.
      It was estimated in 2002, that 16 million people in South Africa were infected with HIV/AIDS. This means that every school will be affected by the epidemic. Children as a group are particularly vulnerable to the effects of HIV/AIDS – by the year 2010 there will be at least 2 million children orphaned by AIDS.
    • What is HIV/AIDS?
      HIV is a virus that gets into the body and flows through the bloodstream. AIDS is the disease that is caused by HIV. When a person is diagnosed HIV positive they do not automatically have AIDS but AIDS will develop over time. Poverty and a poor diet hasten death.

      • HIV is spread by the direct contact of body fluids from an infected person to another. The blood of the infected person contaminates the uninfected person. There are four ways in which HIV is spread from one person to another:
        • Through sexual contact with a person who is infected. This can include sexual intercourse, oral or anal sex (including rape and unsafe sex);
        • The sharing of intravenous needles that still contain infected blood;
        • Through contact with blood injuries;
        • From mother to child before or during birth, as well as through breast milk after birth.
      • HIV cannot be spread through saliva, mosquitoes or tears. HIV cannot penetrate the skin, so the blood of an HIV infected person is only a risk to you if you have cuts on your skin that come into contact with the blood.
      • At the moment there is no cure for HIV/AIDS although scientists are trying to develop a cure for it. Drugs (such as AZT) can prolong the life of an HIV infected person, but these are extremely expensive and not widely available in South Africa. There are three possible ways to a cure for AIDS:
        • To develop a drug that will kill HIV when it enters the blood;
        • To develop a vaccine that will prevent people contracting the disease;
        • To educate people worldwide about the dangers of AIDS and how infection can be prevented.
      • Schools have an important role to play in ensuring that infected and affected learners are not faced with prejudices, and that they receive the care and comfort that they need. Learners who are HIV positive also need to learn that having HIV is NOT a life sentence, if drugs and treatment are available.
      • In addition, young people between the ages of 15 and 24 years are the group most likely to be infected with HIV. They need to be educated about how the disease is spread and how safer sexual practices can prevent infection. They also need to be aware of the difficulty of being diagnosed HIV positive, and be empowered to offer support and care to their friends who are infected and affected.
    • What are the basic steps to addressing HIV/AIDS in a school?
      Step one: Brainstorm what kinds of programme the school could run to address two priorities: education about the virus and safe practices, AND education which instils in the school community empathy and support for those who are HIV positive.

      Step two: Gather as much information about these two areas of concern. Local libraries may have information otherwise the nearest AIDS Training and Information Centre (ATIC) can provide the necessary information.

      Step three: Set up a health advisory committee of concerned people who will work towards the goals of educating the school community about AIDS and creating a supportive environment. They can be responsible for drafting school policy about HIV/AIDS. This committee may include health care workers from clinics, parents and learner representatives, and the school governing body.Step four: Identify community organisations and resources and let the school community know how these resources can be accessed. Some of these are listed below.

       

    • What do community-based initiatives offer?
      • Community-based organisations (CBO’s) offer many services. These include:
        • Information for educators and learners on HIV transmission and prevention;
        • Counselling and support for those infected or affected;
        • Confidential testing for HIV. No test can be done without the consent of the individual;
        • Workshops that help people who have negative attitudes towards those that are HIV positive, to be more accepting and supportive.
      • A community approach to addressing HIV in schools is essential for many reasons.
        • Belonging to social networks has a positive impact on health. Social support for HIV positive people has been shown to prolong their life;
        • Interventions designed will be appropriate for the community;
        • Government does not have the resources to address HIV/AIDS alone.
          First aid kit in schools should include:

          Rubber gloves, mouth to mouth cover, various bandages, disinfectant, cotton wool, blanket, clean water, bucket, sponge.

    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
  2. Dealing with stress and suicide
    • How can awareness of suicide build healthy schools?
      Information on suicide equips educators to identify learners at risk of committing suicide and to intervene to help those learners. It is important to remember that suicide is a symptom of problems in young people’s lives and that the problems (rather than the suicide) should, in the long run, be the focus of interventions. This means that although it is necessary, at the time when a child threatens suicide, to intervene to prevent their death, in the long run it is important to address the reasons why the child wanted to die.
      Good mental health and emotional well-being is essential if young people are to be successful in their academic and social lives. Learners who are emotionally healthy take part in school activities and are productive; they are an asset to the school. Educators do not need to address suicide on their own, as there are a number of places that can provide assistance and professional services to young people (see the end of this section).
    • What are the basic steps to addressing suicide?
      Step one: Brainstorm why it is important to address suicide in your school.

      Step two: Find out what initiatives to prevent suicide are available locally in your area.

      Step three: Set up a committee of concerned parents, educators and learners who are willing to work as school representatives on community-based suicide prevention initiatives

      Step four: Let the school community know how they can access these community initiatives to address suicide.

    • Information on suicide
      Suicide is increasingly common among young people in South Africa. However, most young people who attempt or commit suicide have communicated their desire to commit suicide to another person before they carry it out. This suggests that it is possible to prevent suicide if learners, educators and caregivers are aware of the signs of suicide. These include:

      • Decreased academic performance and skipping classes.
      • Death or suicide themes in artistic or creative work.
      • Withdrawal from friends and activities.
      • Depression, mood changes, sleeplessness or inattention.
      • Recent loss of loved one, or break-up with girlfriend/boyfriendMany myths exist about suicide. For example, it is sometimes believed that young people who talk about suicide will not actually commit suicide. It is important that learners and educators realise that all suicidal threats are serious and are often a plea for help from the young person. Few suicides happen without warning although people often do not recognise the intention. If the intention to commit suicide has been recognised, any person can intervene although the services of a professional counsellor may also be required.
    • What do community-based suicide initiatives offer?
      People working on suicide prevention initiatives can be contacted by the person who is threatening suicide, or by a concerned party. Although these initiatives vary from place to place, in general they will offer:

      • Counselling for the person who is considering, or has attempted, suicide, and their loved ones.
      • Information and advice to educators and caregivers about how to cope with suicide, or suicide threats and attempts.
      • Information on how to intervene when a young person is at risk of committing suicide.
      • Training on how to help teenagers who are suicidal.
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      • ChildLine can provide counselling for young people contemplating suicide.
        Tel: 0800055555
      • SAPS
        Tel: 10111
  3. Substance abuse
    Educators at schools need to be able to assist learners who abuse drugs and alcohol.

    • Signs of abuse
      Here are some signs to look out for that may indicate a learner abuses drugs and alcohol:

      • drop in scholastic achievements;
      • sudden mood swings e.g. from sullen and moody to happy and alert;
      • unusual aggression or apathy;
      • change of friends;
      • loss of interest in hobbies, sport and school;
      • becoming secretive, exhibiting furtive behaviour and lying;
      • tiredness and bouts of drowsiness;
      • unexplained loss of possessions and money;
      • unusual smells of stains on the body and clothes;
      • change in appearance, less interest in personal hygiene, weight loss or gain;
      • drug related paraphernalia such as clothes and jewelleryPlease remember that some of these symptoms could be confused with those of normal adolescence. So don’t over-react but don’t allow your reality to be challenged either. Look for general patterns of changes.
    • Why do young people take drugs?
      There is no easy answer to this question; any number of reasons could include:

      • it feels good to get “stoned”;
      • it’s the fashionable thing to do;
      • boredom;
      • curiosity, some people just want to try a new experience;
      • pressure from friends;
      • the thrill of doing something different;
      • an escape from problems at home or at school;
      • a way to acquire confidence and self-esteem;
      • parental disapproval;
      • it’s there so why not try it? Drugs are usually bought from friends, in clubs and on the street;
      • it’s illegal and therefore may seem exciting;
      • everyone does it!It does not really help to map out the causes and effects of the problem as we did in the other sections. The important thing is to have a procedure and protocol for managing situations so that individual educators are not handling these situations on their own.
    • Possible partners
      • You should identify partners locally: social workers, school clinics, the South African National Council of Alcohol and Drug Dependence (SANCA) and other NGOs as well as the SAPS. The only problem with involving the police is that immediately it becomes a legal issue, and often the police are seen as “the enemy”, so its important to look at appropriate interventions.
      • School governing bodies and parents: schools cannot enforce a “no drugs” programme if parents allow drug taking at home, or do not realise the extent of the problem. Parents may need information on how to deal with drugs in the home in order for any intervention to be successful.
      • Community and business leaders: They may be important role models for young people and can help to motivate learners to become successful.
    • Practical and realistic interventions
      It is very difficult to identify the cause of the problem. The cause is generally very complicated and is basically a societal cause. It is therefore far better to look at individual interventions that work.
      Interventions that worked:

      The Problem Successful Interventions Useful Resources
      Educators are aware that learners are taking drugs but feel helpless to intervene. Schools that deal successfully with drug abuse train educators with specific skills in how to detect drug abuse, how to treat and help learners, how to involve the parents and how to best design a structured intervention with the learner. Educators willing to be trained, an NGO or social worker that can offer the training.
      Educators and learners are unsure of what to expect when a drug problem is identified. A crucial part of successfully tackling drug abuse is the development and implementation of a drug policy at school.
      This policy helps educators to follow a certain course of action that has proved to be successful.
      The school governing body, educators, learner representatives and someone who is experienced in the field could run a workshop to develop a school policy on drugs.
      Once a learner is taking drugs, it seems very difficult to intervene and offer alternatives. It has been proved that high impact education programmes on an ongoing basis in the school, have very positive results. These education programmes should not be didactic or punitive but should engage learners in a manner that they can relate to. Educators to be committed to ongoing education programmes, experts in the field to constantly update methodology and approach.
    • Common obstacles or problems
      Common Problems Solutions That May Help
      Learners are unlikely to tell educators about drug use because of the severe consequences. Educators need to be trained to look out for signs of drug use.

      This training should also involve how to intervene successfully in a way that does not alienate the learner but actually assists in his or her recovery. It is very, very important that educators do not promise to treat the matter confidentially; by keeping secrets and not taking any action, an educator may be giving tacit approval of the behaviour and become an enabler instead of actually helping with the problem. Educators need training as far as boundaries etc are concerned.

      Learners who are worried about their friends taking drugs do not tell educators for fear of betraying them. Some schools use an “anonymous box” where learners can anonymously post information about substance abuse in the school. However, these anonymous boxes can have a negative impact if the information posted in them is taken as FACT. The information must be investigated correctly. The section in the school policy dealing with “rumours” should explain the procedure for investigating information.
    • Measuring the success of the intervention
      • Interestingly enough if a school programme is successful there may be more learners presenting with problems rather than less. A successful programme identifies and assists learners with coming to terms with their own abuse. Therefore, a successful programme may result in more learners asking for help. To measure the success of the programme therefore, it is no good measuring if the number of learners involved in drug abuse has decreased; rather ask questions of educators about the success of the programme.
      • Work out a set of questions, for example:
        How well did educators manage substance abuse situations? Are they more confident? Are they more able to identify a learner with problems? Have structured interventions been successful? Have learners who have been through a treatment programme been successfully reintegrated into the school system and stayed clean?
    • Helpful National Contact Numbers
      • South African Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (SANCA)
        National organisation offering prevention and treatment (in- and outpatient) of alcohol and other drug abuse.
        Tel: 086 14 72622 / 011 892 3829
        E-mail: sancanational@telkomsa.net
        Web site: https://www.sancanational.info/
      • ChildLine
        Taking drugs is often a sign that a child is experiencing personal or family problems and lacks self-esteem and confidence.
        ChildLine offers counselling and advice to these young people.
        Tel: 08000 555 55
        Web site: www.childlinesa.org.za
      • Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) offers help to people suffering from alcohol abuse.
        Tel:0861 435 722
        Web site: http://www.aasouthafrica.org.za/

14.6 BUILDING HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES

14.6.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • Employment of Educators Act 76 of 1998 [EEA]

 

POLICIES

  • Integrated School Health Policy (2012) [NP ISH]

14.6.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Building Healthy Alternatives

Many South African schools are so desperately under-resourced that extra-mural and extra-curricular activity has been limited. However, the value of extra-mural activities is becoming widely acknowledged. Sport, music, art and drama, to name but a few, provide physical and emotional outlets for young people and channel energies which in an environment of uncertainty and violence, could so easily lead to criminal and violent activity.

Being part of an active team, activity or organisation can help youth “rise above” their social circumstances. Art and music help youth to deal with trauma and deep-rooted psychological issues. Encouraging young people to express their thoughts and feelings through art, music or drama can have a tremendous impact on the school environment, and the importance of structuring these opportunities into the school day cannot be overestimated.

Sport is a tremendously important outlet for young people and an essential component of any health-promoting programme. Sports stars are mostly good role models and can motivate their fans to follow a healthy lifestyle. Educators can build on the admiration young people have for their sporting heroes and heroines by encouraging learners to participate in sport. Although competitive sport is important in setting goals and developing team spirit and leadership, it is more important that young people do sport for the enjoyment of it without feeling under pressure to perform. A healthy body is conducive to a healthy mind and spirit and ultimately contributes to the general health of a school or community.

  • Youth involved in sport, music and art often have:
    • An improved self-image and body awareness;
    • Better communication skills;
    • An increased ability to use energy purposefully;
    • Reduced abusive and disruptive behaviour;
    • Better interaction with peers and others;
    • Increased independence and self-direction;
    • Improved creativity and imagination;
    • Better emotional expression and adjustment.
  • Examples of healthy activities:
    • Reading;
    • Philosophy group;
    • Scouts and guides;
    • Family planning and teenage mothers group;
    • Gardening and growing vegetables;
    • Sport;
    • Drama;
    • Music / choir;
    • Chess;
    • Debating;
    • Ballet;
    • Youth club involvement;
    • First aid training;
    • Environmental club;
    • Small business development.
  • Helpful National Contact Numbers
    • Sport for All develops sports facilities in townships.
      Tel: + 27 87 820 4030
      E-mail: info@sportforall.co.za
      Web site: www.sportforall.org.za
    • SchoolNet SA
      Helps develop the capacity of learners.
      Tel: (011) 403 5777
      E-mail: info@schoolnet.org.za
      Web site: www.schoolnet.org.za
    • Super Sport Let’s Play
      Their aim is to elevate awareness of our social situation and to introduce and encourage play, activity and sport in schools and at home.
      E-mail: vaughn.bishop@supersport.co.za
      Website: https://www.supersport.com/letsplay/news/faq
    • READ Education Trust provides books with educational value to all grades.
      Tel: +27 87 237 7781
      E-mail: info@read.co.za
      Web site: www.read.org.za
    • Girl Guides Association of South Africa
      Gives girls the opportunity to develop life and leadership skills while having fun.
      Tel: (011) 795 3767
      E-mail: info@girlguides.co.za
      Web site: www.girlguides.org.za
    • SA Scout Association
      Develops in young people spiritual awareness, respect for others and a willingness to serve the community through physical activity and mental challenges.
      Tel: 0860 726 887
      E-mail: info@scouts.org.za
      Web site: www.scouts.org.za
    • Southern African Association of Youth Clubs
      Youth service organisation aiming to improve quality of life of South African youth by offering youth enhancement programmes, advocacy and networking.
      Tel: (011) 674 5485
      E-mail: info@saayc.co.za
      Web site: www.saayc.co.za

14.7 APPROACHES TO EVALUATING CRIME PREVENTION / YOUTH PROGRAMMES

14.7.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • Employment of Educators Act 76 of 1998 [EEA]

14.7.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Approaches to Evaluating Crime Prevention / Youth Programmes

  1. Why evaluate?
    • There is generally a lack of information in South Africa on what kinds of programmes work in which situations and why. Evaluating programmes helps us to choose which one is best for our school.
    • Evaluations tell us whether our intervention is working and which aspects of it are working best, and where we need to improve. It is a way of finding out whether we have reached the goal that we set for ourselves.
    • Evaluating a programme helps to convince potential donors to give money to the programme. It also tells them how their money is being spent, and how effectively it is being spent.
    • Evaluations provide us with proof that our programme works!
    • Evaluations often highlight new problems that need investigating in the school. For example, a programme aimed to reduce drug use among learners may alert you to the fact that there are very low levels of parental supervision after school hours.
  2. Getting to grips with the language of evaluation
    Throughout the unit several terms will be used. These terms are explained below.

    Terms Definition
    Objectives Your goals. The results you want to achieve through your programme.
    Inputs The resources you need in order to carry out your programme. These may be educators, funds, resources etc.
    Outputs The products of the programme. For example, “six high impact educational workshops”, a “training course for educators resulting in six trained educators”.
    Impact/Outcome The result of the programme. For example “a 50% reduction in drug use in the school following an education workshop”.
    Monitoring Keeping track of the programme progress. Monitoring what you are investing in the project (such as time, money) and whether the programme is being carried out according to plan. This is the most basic form of evaluation.
    Evaluation Finding out whether the programme is achieving its goal – such as reducing high rates of absenteeism in the school.
    Confounding variables External factors (outside of your programme) that may shape your programme results. If you are running self-esteem workshops for learners, a potential confounding variable could be a similar project being run by the local church. When you measure the learner’s self-esteem you won’t know whether it is due to your programme or the church’s programme.
    Formative evaluation This is an evaluation of the process of implementing your programme i.e. not the results, but the way in which the programme was run. Was the programme implemented as planned? Were there factors that stood in the way of its implementation? What parts of the programme went smoothly?
    Outcome evaluation or summative evaluation This asks the questions: “What changes took place? What was the impact of our programme? Did it change things at school?” For example: Compared to before the programme was implemented, how much has drug use in the school decreased?
    Indicators An indicator is used to measure how successful the programme has been. For example, finding out how many learners have been absent from the attendance register would be an indicator of rates of absenteeism. If you want to know whether levels of attendance at school have increased, your baseline data could be the attendance records before the programme was introduced. These will be compared with the attendance records after the programme has been run.
    Base-line information This is information you need before the programme starts so that you can measure it against information at the end of the programme. For example if your programme aims to increase the awareness of HIV/AIDS, you will need to do a survey with learners before you begin the programme to record their opinions and knowledge. This information is called base-line information. After the programme is finished you will conduct a summative evaluation to see if learner attitudes and knowledge has changed.
  3. What questions does an evaluation aim to answer?
    • Did we implement all the steps in our programme plan? We all start out with a plan, at the end of the programme we need to ask ourselves, were any steps in our plan left out? Why were they left out?
    • Did we achieve our outcome? An outcome is the final result of the programme: did we achieve our result? If you had planned to reduce truancy, you would ask “have levels of truancy been reduced and by how much?”
    • How do we know that the results (such as reduced truancy) are because of our programme? Were there any other programmes or factors (confounding variables) that might have also contributed to reducing truancy? What are they?
    • What factors made the programme work well?
    • Was the programme successful because educators were very involved? Because parents and the school governing body prioritized the programme? Because the materials were very effective?
    • What factors made it difficult to implement the programme?
    • What obstacles did you face? Where should we place more of our efforts in the future?
    • Is the programme cost effective? This is difficult to measure but you need to ask: “was our programme cost-effective?” Cost may include several things such as money, staff time or equipment used such as paper, pens etc. If clear records are kept of how much is spent, the cost per child enrolled in the programme can be worked out. Similarly, the time invested per child can be established. For example if you introduce a drug education programme for 12 learners for one hour a week over a three-month period (i.e. you invest 12 hours), the cost in time would be one hour per child. This investment can then be weighed up against the success of the programme in reducing drug use among learners.
  4. Who should do the evaluation?
    • Internal versus external evaluations
      Sometimes a person inside the school who has been involved in the programme design does the evaluation. We support the idea of the evaluation being internal; educators do not feel that they are being judged or treated like guinea pigs and the evaluation is more useful because educators ask and answer the questions that are most important to them. There are several advantages and disadvantages of an internal evaluation:

      • Advantages of an internal evaluation
        • People from within the programme often have a better understanding of the programme and how it has worked.
        • It is more cost-effective. Many people leave out the evaluation stage of their programme because they don’t have the resources. This is a very bad idea because it means you are unsure whether your programme makes any difference at all.
      • Disadvantages of an internal evaluation
        • We live in a society where many factors impact on our behaviour, attitudes and lifestyle. It is often very difficult to isolate one programme and say, “the reason that bullying has decreased in our school is because of this one programme”. Ideally, programme implementers should be on the lookout for other factors that may also influence the current programme.
        • Sometimes the kinds of changes that we are wanting are very hard to measure. For example, if we implement a programme to improve the self-esteem of learners, how do we know that it works? Self-esteem is very difficult to measure because we can’t observe or count it. In many cases we have to rely on what learners tell us has changed for them.
        • The language of evaluation can at times be confusing. It is important to remember that the evaluation is for your benefit only and is used to improve your programme and perhaps secure funding for it. It is therefore not necessary for you to use or understand all the jargon that can go with evaluations.
  5. Key principles in evaluating youth programmes
    • There is no right way to do an evaluation. There are many different kinds of evaluations that are useful for different purposes, at different times in a programme’s history.
    • Ideally you should decide what you are going to evaluate and how you will evaluate it at the start of your programme. Therefore if you have to collect base-line information, you can do so at the start.
    • Most programmes in schools spring not from a need to answer a set of questions, but from the desire to act NOW. This action usually expands and improves over time and our evaluation methods should be able to accommodate this.
    • Programme evaluation should be collaboration from the beginning. This collaboration should be between all stakeholders involved in the programme. E.g. parents, learners, educators etc.
    • It is important for an evaluator to be someone who communicates well with the programme staff and is able to clearly explain what is needed for the evaluations, how it will proceed, the costs, benefits and the limitations. This should be planned at the beginning of the evaluation so that you do not collect all your information and then disagree about what it means. This is especially important if an outside evaluator is used.The main purpose of evaluation is to provide information that is useful to the programme and can meet the programme needs. This cannot be accomplished if the evaluation is simply handed over to an evaluation expert without the programme staff understanding what will be done and how it will be done.
    • An incremental approach to evaluation should be taken. This means that the results of the evaluation should be used to build up your programme. For example, if the evaluation of a programme to reduce gun carrying at school shows that children are predominantly bringing their parent’s guns to school, then the next phase of the project may include a parent education component. Also aspects of the programme that were initially thought to be important may, after evaluation, not be important and might be dropped from the next phase of the programme.
      Educators are reluctant to spend time doing evaluations. How can we change this so that educators support evaluations?
    • Make sure everyone “buys into” the value that evaluations add to programmes, research and funding.
    • A lack of resources should not prevent an evaluation from taking place. Rather, when resources are scarce, evaluations are essential so that you can spend resources in the place where they will be most effective.
    • If you make sure from the beginning that the evaluation is a consultative process and that all programme staff understand the value of the evaluation and how it will be done, they will be more supportive of the evaluation.
    • Make evaluations participatory and collaborative. All programme staff, parents, and community members will have ideas about how the programme has worked and how it should be changed. It is these ideas that are most useful for evaluations.
    • Design evaluations that are realistic and that do not place too much pressure on programme staff.
    • Ensure that programmes will benefit directly from the evaluation. Make sure that the questions you ask will inform the running of, and the content of, the programme.
    • Make sure that the questions you ask can be measured. For example it is not useful to ask whether children are happier. Rather ask how are they happier? Are they doing better at school? Have their relationships improved?
      Developing good indicators

      Indicators should be related to your objectives. If you aim to reduce racism in school, an indicator could be the amount of time learners spend with members of race groups other than their own before and after the programme.

      Indicators must be clear, specific and measurable.

      Indicators should describe the result and the degree to which the result has taken place. It is not enough to say that attendance in class has improved, how much has it improved? How many children that were truant before the programme are now attending regularly?

      Indicators can also include the aspects of the daily lives of the programme staff. They may include questions such as “how did you spend your time?” If during a self-esteem workshop most of the educators time was spent discussing problems of child abuse, then perhaps child abuse needs to be addressed as a separate aspect of the programme or instead of the existing one.

      All involved in the programme must agree on the indicators that will be used.

  6. Some ideas to get you started
    • How to evaluate a programme that is going to be implemented?
      Example: tackling bullying in school
      You will first plan your programme carefully
      For example:

      • Programme objectives
        Broad objectives of the programme:

        • To create a school environment where learners feel safe and can concentrate on their studies.
        • To teach learners to respect one another and to express aggression in healthy ways.
      • Specific objectives:
        • To reduce the levels of bullying in the school.
    • Designing an evaluation framework
      You now need to ask “what do we want to measure in this programme?”

      • Do you want to measure the process of how the programme was implemented and how well you followed the plan?
      • Did you want to evaluate the impact of the programme? What did it change at your school?
      • Do you want to evaluate the cost of the programme?Let’s say you want to measure all three aspects of your programme:
    • Measuring the process of how your programme was implemented:
      • Keep a record of which activities took place, when they took place, who implemented them and how long they took to implement. Record anything that happened during these activities e.g. low learner turn out, workshop raised new problems. You will use these records at the end of your programme to see if you followed the programme plan and to see whether activities changed along the way to make the programme more effective. Another useful tool is to get the project participants to keep diaries throughout the programme. In this way you might be able to track the process better.
      • What activities took place that were not included in the plan? What effect did these changes have on the programme?
    • Measuring the impact of your programme:
      • Your programme aims to reduce the levels of bullying. How will you do this? Develop a set of indicators that will help you measure the decline of bullying. Do you have any records on how many children were reported by monitors for bullying before you started the programme? Or how many learners complained of being bullied? At this point you may want to collect some of this base-line information by having educators count the number of incidents of bullying that they see in the school. Remember to define carefully what you mean by bullying!
      • You may set aside one week to collect base-line information. Each educator will be given a book in which they note every incident of bullying that happens in their class and what kind of bullying it is. At the same time, if possible, records will be collected to see how many reports of bullying there have been in the six months prior to the programme. Someone will need to summarise this information.
      • After the programme is finished, count the number of incidents of reported and counted bullying before and after the programme. Work out by what percent bullying has decreased. For the focus group discussions, take detailed notes and find out what the most common themes are. For example, do most learners feel that the programme helped them to feel safer? Did they feel that it lessened bullying in the classroom but not on the playground? Did they find the education workshops too short or too long?
      • As part of your strategy to reduce bullying you may implement a programme aimed at teaching monitors conflict management skills and learners how to manage anger. You will need to think about how both of these could be evaluated. How will you decide whether learners are managing their conflicts any better than they did in the past?
    • Measure the cost of the programme
      • Cost may include several things such as money, staff time or equipment used such as paper, pens, etc. If clear records are kept of how much is spent, the cost per child enrolled in the programme can be worked out. Similarly the time invested per child can be established. This amount will then be measured against the success of your programme. The calculation is done by taking the overall cost of the programme and dividing it by the number of learners involved in the programme.
      • (Overall cost of project/number of learners = cost per learner). For example, if the project cost R200 000 to complete and 40 learners were involved in the programme, then the cost per learner is 200 000 / 40 = R5000. The cost is R5000 per learner. You can then decide if this is too costly to take to other schools. You can also calculate the budget if you wanted to re-run the programme with 400 more learners.
        Timing your evaluation

        Do not evaluate when learners are writing exams or otherwise distracted. If there has been a serious incident of violence on the school grounds, this may impact on the levels of bullying in the school. For example, if there has been a shooting, levels of conflict may be very high. This needs to be taken into account when you evaluate your programme. The shooting would be an example of a confounding variable. Also consider for how long you want to conduct the evaluation. For example, one week after the programme bullying may have reduced by 50% but is this still true six months later? The length of your evaluation will depend on the resources and time you have available, and what indicators you use.

  7. Helpful Contact Numbers:

EasternCape

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
ChildLine
Tel: 08 000 55 555
Tel: (043) 722 1382
adminec@childlinesa.org.za
AIDS Training Information and Counselling Centre (ATICC)
City Health Dept, 30 Beaconsfield Road, East London 5201
Tel: (043) 705 2969
atic@iafrica.com
Project for Conflict Resolution and Development
22 Hurd Street
Newton Park, Port Elizabeth
Tel: (041) 585 5688
www.facebook.com/pages/Project-For-Conflict-Resolution-Development/1189675111043863
SANCA
22 St Marks Road, East London
Tel: (043) 722 1210
info@sancacec.co.za
www.sancacec.co.za
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
62 Western Road,
Port Elizabeth
Tel: (041) 585 9393
pe@famsa.org.za
NACOSA
1st Floor, Office No 3, Frere Square, 58 Frere Road, East London
Tel: (043) 726 2146
ecadmin@nacosa.org.za
www.nacosa.org.za

FreeState

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
10 Strauss St., Bloemfontein
Tel: (051) 525 2395
famsabfn@xpd.co.za
AIDS forum
Thaba Nchu, Selosesha
Tel: (051) 873 2233
The Centre for Citizenship Education & Conflict Resolution
Tel: (051) 448 8200
SANCA
15 Brompton Road, Naval View, Bloemfontein
Tel: (051) 4474111
aurorasentrum@xsinet.co.za
www.auroracentre.co.za
Childline
Tel: (051) 430 3311
reception@cwcl.org.za
www.childwelfarebfn.org.za
NACOSA
7 Brill Street, Bloemfontein
Tel: (051) 011 0587
fsadmin@nacosa.org.za
www.nacosa.org.za
NICRO
No 12 Tannery Road, Hamilton, Bloemfontein
Tel: (051) 435 5193
marita@nicro.co.za
www.nicro.org.za

Gauteng

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Family Life Centre (FAMSA)
15 Pascoe Avenue, Kempton Park
Tel: (011) 975 7106/7
national@famsa.org.za
www.famsa.org.za
AIDS Consortium
66 Sailor Malan Avenue, Omnipark Block 1, First Floor, Aeroton 2013, Johannesburg
Tel: (011) 403 0265
info@aidsconsortium.org.za
www.aidsconsortium.org.za
Centre of Violence and Reconciliation
33 Hoofd Street, Braampark Forum 5, 3rd Floor, Johannesburg
Tel: (011) 403 5650
info@csvr.org.za

www.csvr.org.za
SANCA (National
Directorate)
2 Whitney Road, Whitney Gardens, Lyndhurst, Johannesburg
Tel: 086 14 72622
Tel: (011) 892 3829
sancanational@telkomsa.net
www.sancanational.info
Childline
Tel: (011) 645 2000
admingauteng@childline.org.za
www.childlinegauteng.co.za
NACOSA
Iparioli Office Park A2, 1166 Park Street , Hatfield, Pretoria
Tel: (012 ) 940 2829
lindiwe@nacosa.org.za
www.nacosa.org.za
NICRO
Room 544 5th Floor Van Erkom Building 217, Pretorius Street Pretoria Central
Tel: (012) 326 8115
www.nicro.org.za

KwaZulu-Natal

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Childline
Tel: (031) 312 0904
reception@childlinekzn.org.za
www.childlinekzn.org.za
AIDS Foundation of South Africa (AFSA)
2nd Floor, Standard Bank Centre, 135 Musgrave Road, Durban
Tel: (031) 277 2700
info@aids.org.za
www.aids.org.za
Independent Projects Trust (IPT)
Crime Reduction in Schools Project (CRISP)
2702 Old Mutual Centre, 27th Floor, 303 West Street, Durban
Tel: (031) 260 2366
iptnet@wn.apc.org
www.ipt.co.za
SANCA
185 Vause Road, Berea, Durban
Tel: (031) 303 2274
sancapmb@mweb.co.za
www.sancadbn.co.za
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
30 Bulwer Road, Berea, Glenwood, Durban
Tel: (031) 202 8987
famsadbn@mweb.co.za
www.famsa.org.za
NACOSA
Unit 5 Pinewood Office Park, 18 Underwood Road, Pinetown
Tel: (031) 701 1039
kznadmin@nacosa.org.za
www.nacosa.org.za
NICRO
G 14 Wheeler House, 40 Linze Road, Greyville
Tel: (031) 309 8333/6/9
jobm@nicro.co.za
www.nicro.org.za

Limpopo

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
No. 8 Second Avenue, Medipark, Tzaneen
Tel: (015) 307 4833
famsatzaneen@telkomsa.net
www.famsalimpopo-tzaneen.co.za
AIDS Training Information and Counselling Centre (ATICC)
Cnr Potgieter & Diaz Streets, Polokwane
Tel: (015) 290 2363
Youth Commission
154 Van Rensburg Street, Polokwane
Tel: (015) 291 3678Naledi Foundation
Office number 7
Mtititi Thusong Service Centre, Plange Village, Malamulele
Tel: 079 971 6532
info@naledifoundation.org
www.naledifoundation.org
SANCA
33 Kerk Street, Polokwane
Tel: (015) 295 3700
info@sancalimpopo.co.za
www.sancalimpopo.co.za
Childline
18 Hans van Rensburg Street (Unit 1), Polokwane
Tel: (087) 943 6539
mufhandur@childlinelim.org.za
www.childlinelim.org.za
AIDS Foundation of South Africa (AFSA)
Tel: 087 353 7142
NICRO
No 28 Jorrison Str (between Biccard & Voortrekker streets) Polokwane
Tel: (015) 297 7538
nthabi@nicro.co.za
www.nicro.org.za

Mpumalanga

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Greater Nelspruit Rape Intervention Project (GRIP)
17 Ehmke Street, Nelspruit/Mbombela
Tel: (013) 752 4404
Cell: 083 310 1321
info@grip.org.za
www.grip.org.za
AIDS Training Information & Counselling Centre (ATICC)
7 Bell Street, Nelspruit
Tel: (013) 759 2167
Manna for Youth
PO Box 4148, Witbank 1035
Tel: (013) 656 2793
SANCA
Help Centre
8 Hope St, Nelspruit
Tel: (013) 755 2710
Cel: 082 451 3226
admin@sancalowveld.co.za
www.sancalowveld.co.za
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
6 Bester Street, North Nelspruit
Tel: 061 960 1549
famsanelspruit@vodamail.co.za
www.famsa.org.za
AIDS Foundation of South Africa (AFSA)
Tel: 087 353 7140
www.aids.org.za
NICRO
20 Ferreira Street, Volante House, 1st and 2nd Floor, Nelspruit (Mbombela)
Tel: (013) 13 755 3540 / 013 755 3745
claudine@nicro.co.za
www.nicro.org.za
Childline
Tel: (013) 752 2770
Phumzile@childlinempu.org.za
www.childlinempu.org.za

NorthernCape

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Childline
6 York Street, Kimberley
Tel: (053)8325962
administration@childlinenc.org.za
AGANG Aids Service
272 Jackson Makodi Street, Unit 1, Pampierstad
Tel: (053) 996 1254
NICRO
9C, Roper Street, Kimberley
Tel : (053) 831 1715
kuki@nicro.co.za
www.nicro.org.za
SANCA
8 Knight Street, Kimberley
Tel: (053) 8325216
sancakimberley@telkomsa.net
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
4 Fenton St, De Beers Building, Kimberley
Tel: (053) 872 2644
zolekabula@yahoo.com

NorthWest

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Childline
31 Rietief Street, Potchefstroom
Tel: (018) 297 4411
directorclnw@gmail.com
NWU AIDS Office
NWU, 246 Administration Building
Tel: (018) 389 2001
Pan.mabille@nwu.ac.za
http://www.nwu.ac.za/content/nwu-mafikeng-campus-hiv-and-aids
NICRO
Room 544, 5th Floor Van Erkom Building, 217 Pretorius Street, Pretoria Central
Tel: (012) 326 8115
www.nicro.org.za
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
NG Kerk Oosterlig, Corner of Hugo and Lea Street, Waterkloof Glen, Pretoria
Tel: (012) 993-5827
office@npaa.org.za
www.aasouthafrica.org.za
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
3 Singer Road, Potchefstroom
Tel: 018 293 2272
potch@famsa.org.za
www.famsa.org.za
SANCA
c/o President Kruger & Bishop Desmond Tutu Streets, Klerksdorp
Tel: 018 462 4568
sanpark@lantic.net
www.sanpark.org.za

WesternCape

Sexual Abuse/Child Abuse HIV/AIDS Safe Schools/Life Skills Substance Abuse
Childline
No. 38 Fleming Road, Wynberg
Tel: (021) 762 8198
info@childlinewc.org
NACOSA
3rd Floor, East Tower Century Blvd, Cape Town
Tel: (021) 552 0804
info@nacosa.org.za
www.nacosa.org.za
Centre for Conflict Resolution
Coornhoop, 2 Dixton Road, Observatory 7925
Tel: (021) 689 1005
mailbox@ccr.org.za
www.ccr.org.za
AL-ANON and Alateen
616 Pearl House, Strand Street, Cape Town
Tel: (021) 418 0021
Family and Marriage Society of South Africa (FAMSA)
9 Bowden Road, Observatory
Tel: 021 447 7951
famsa@famsawc.org.za
www.famsawc.org.za
NICRO
1 Harrington Street, Cape Town
Tel: (021) 462 0017
info@nicro.co.za
www.nicro.org.za
SANCA
18 Karoo Street, Bellville
Tel: (021) 945 4080/1
sanca@sancawc.co.za
www.sancawc.co.za
Rape Crisis
23 Trill Road, Observatory, Cape Town
Tel: (021) 447 1467
info@rapecrisis.org.za
www.rapecrisis.org.za

14.8 DRUG ABUSE BY LEARNERS IN PUBLIC AND INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS AND FURTHER EDUCATION AND TRAINING INSTITUTIONS

14.8.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • Employment of Educators Act 76 of 1998 [EEA]
  • Medicines and Related Substances Control Act, 1965 [MEDS]
  • Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act, 1992 [DDT]

 

GUIDELINES

  • Guide to Drug Testing in South African Schools [NG DT]

 

SAOU legal opinion:
Private use of cannabis implications for schools SAOU legal opinion (26 april 2019)

KwaZulu-Natal

POLICIES

  • KZN Policy on Smoking [Reference B4 SMOKING]

NorthernCape

POLICY

NC Smoking Policy, 22 May 2017 [Refefence B7 NC Smoking policy]

14.8.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Drug Abuse by Learners in Public and Independent Schools and Further Education and Training Institutions

  1. Introduction
    • This policy framework seeks to contribute towards effective prevention, management and treatment of drug use, misuse and dependence in public or independent schools and Further Education and Training Institutions. It is consistent with and complementary to the National Drug Master Plan 1999 – 2004 (Department of Welfare 1999) and has been formulated to give effect to the South African Constitution in terms of its provision for the right to a basic education, the right not to be unfairly discriminated against, the right to life, the right to privacy as well as bodily and psychological integrity. These rights can, however not be misused to protect illegal and destructive behaviour, which undermines the learning process.
    • This policy takes cognizance of principles contained in various relevant instruments and policies such as the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child as well as the Guidelines for the Consideration of Governing Bodies in Adopting a Code of Conduct for Learners.
    • In all instances, it should be interpreted to ensure a supportive environment, ever mindful of the rights of learners and students with drug, abuse or dependency problems, as well as the rights of other learners, students, educators and members of the school community.
  2. Guiding Principles
    • The possession, use or distribution of illegal drugs, and the inappropriate possession, use or distribution of legal drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, is prohibited in South African Schools and this message should be delivered clearly and consistently within our school communities.
    • It is the Ministry’s intention that all South African schools should become tobacco, alcohol and illicit drug-free zones.
    • All learning institutions should have clear policies on both prevention and intervention, underpinned by a restorative supportive orientation. These policies and procedures should be clearly communicated and disseminated to the school community in a culturally appropriate and inclusive way and should give priority to:
      • Developing safe and supportive school environments that value human dignity and celebrate innocence;
      • Educating the entire school community regarding drugs and the abuse thereof;
      • Developing a range of responses, for managing drug related incidents within the school, taking into account confidentiality, the nature of the incident, the circumstances of the learners involved, and the needs and safety of the school community;
      • Building capacity by giving educators, particularly those working with drug related incidents, access to professional development opportunities, provided by Provincial Departments of Education, other government departments or private providers;
      • Regular monitoring and evaluation of policies and procedures for managing drug related incidents in schools.
    • All information relating to drug use, misuse or dependency by a learner, should be treated as confidential. In the case of a learner, parents/guardians should be informed and involved at the earliest possible opportunity in any attempts to assist the learner. Where reports are required by the school, institution, or Department of Education from the treatment team as part of a relapse prevention programme, these should be furnished, with the learner’s written permission, solicited in the presence of a parent/guardian in the case of a minor, to a designated and trained person. Where the learner refuses to co-operate school disciplinary procedures should be invoked.
    • The need for confidentiality cannot and should not prevent identification and prosecution of drug dealers and pushers.
    • In case of disclosure, educators and learners should be given support to handle confidentiality issues and be prepared to handle such disclosures. In certain circumstances where the safety of the learner or educator may be at risk, limited disclosure is acceptable to a specific educator. This is specifically in institutions where the learner is operating machines or other potentially dangerous apparatus.
  3. Drug Screening/Testing
    • By its very nature, drug testing is an invasion of privacy and may infringe the constitutional and personal rights of learners. It should therefore not be the first point of intervention.
    • Random drug testing is prohibited. There is no empirical evidence or justification for routine random testing of learners, to reduce usage. Drug testing should be used where there is reasonable suspicion that a child is using drugs. Testing must be implemented as part of a structured intervention or relapse prevention programme in an environment that is committed to safeguarding personal rights relating to privacy, dignity and bodily integrity according to school policy, medical/treatment procedures and ethical guidelines. The results of the testing cannot be made public but can be shared with the child’s parent or guardian.
  4. Searches
    Random searches of individuals are prohibited. Searches of learners can only be carried out by persons of the same gender as part of a structured intervention in a decent and orderly manner, if there is reasonable suspicion that the learner is in possession of a prohibited substance. Should a search be necessary, it should take place in the presence of the learner concerned, a person of their choice to support them and a second adult witness of the same gender.
  5. Education and Prevention
    • Learners
      • The objective of preventive education is to negate, counteract or delay the likelihood experimentation with drugs by providing information about the dangers of their use and misuse, as well as to encourage those who are experiencing problems to get the help they need.
      • Drug education, included in the Learning Area of Life Orientation in the Revised National Curriculum Statement for Grades R to 9 and the National Curriculum for FET, will ensure that learners and students acquire age- and context-appropriate knowledge and skills, in order for them to adopt and maintain life skills and behaviour that will protect them from drug use, misuse and dependency.
      • Schools and institutions should, as far as possible, involve outside organizations specialising in drug education and intervention and other associated programmes to augment the education provided by the school-based educators.
    • Parents/Guardians
      Education and information on drug use, misuse and dependency as well as the policy of the school or institution concerning drug abuse should be made available to all parents/guardians of learners, as well as learners themselves, upon first registration at a school. Schools need to regularly interact with parents/guardians on drug abuse through workshops and information sharing sessions.
    • Educators
      • Training should be provided for all educators on drug use, misuse and dependency management, and support provided where appropriate.
      • Appropriate course content should be developed for the pre-service and in-service training of educators to cope with drug related incidents within the schools.
  6. Intervention
    • Each case will be considered on its individual merits taking into account:
      • The nature of the incident
      • The learner / student’s school and family history
      • Cultural background
      • Mental Health and intellectual ability
      • Any other relevant information
    • The Ministry of Education will support learners who want or need help, through an approach that is both restorative and supportive.
    • Learners and students who have experienced or are experiencing problems as a result of alcohol and drug use, misuse or dependency and accept treatment, will be entitled to appropriate assistance, and should not be denied the opportunity to receive an education or the right to reintegration into the same school community. However if such reintegration is deemed by the SGB and school management to be detrimental to the safety and discipline of the school the learner should be assisted in finding an alternative school.
    • In cases where the learner does not wish to make use of such help offered to him or her, or is found guilty of dealing in drugs the Provincial Departments of Education will have no choice but to take the necessary disciplinary action, which may include suspension or expulsion, as determined by relevant legislation. These measures should be integrated into a structured intervention involving the learner and the parents/guardian to encourage compliance, allowing the learner to be suspended pending enrolment in an appropriate rehabilitation or relapse prevention programme.
  7. School and Institution Management Plan
    • In order to meet the demands of the wide variety of circumstances posed by the South African context and to acknowledge the importance of governing bodies; learner representative councils as well as parents in the education partnership, it is envisaged that the Governing Body of a school, acting within its functions under the South African Schools Act (1996) and the Council of Further Education and Training Act (1998), or any provincial law, will give operational effect to the national policy framework working with other role-players in developing and adopting a drug use, misuse and dependency management plan that reflects the needs, ethos and values of the school or institution and its community.
    • The Code of Conduct adopted for learners at a school or students at an institution should include adequate provision regarding school or institution policy and procedure on drug use, misuse and dependency.
    • Major role players in the wider school community (NGOs, health care and medical professionals, SAPS and the Government Departments of Health, Social Development and Justice) should be involved in developing supportive management plans and procedures, and can assist in developing School and Institutional Management Plans.
  8. Definitions/Glossary
    • Drug: A substance that produces a psychoactive effect. In this policy the term drug is used generically to include tobacco and herbal cigarettes, alcohol, pharmaceutical drugs (prescribed and over the counter), illicit drugs, image and performance enhancing substances and inhalants and other volatile substances.
    • Illicit/Illegal Drug: A range of drugs which the production, sale, possession and use of is prohibited. These drugs include but are not limited to amphetamine, cocaine, dagga, ecstasy, heroin, LSD, mandrax.
    • Inhalants: Substances inhaled for their effect such as glue, thinners, petrol, aerosol sprays, paint, solvents etc.
    • Image & Performance Enhancing Drugs: A range of substances, some illicit others not, used to enhance sporting or athletic performance or body image, such as anabolic steroids.
    • Pharmaceuticals: Prescription and over the counter drugs available from a pharmacy. It is illegal to possess or use some of these drugs without a prescription.
    • Psychoactive Substance: A psychoactive substance alters the way in which the body and/or mind functions. It alters the way a person normally thinks, feels and behaves.
    • Structured Intervention:  A controlled crisis where the user is confronted with the desperate reality of his or her situation and offered treatment.
    • Reintegration into the school community: Procedures for (re)engaging and supporting learners and educators in school attendance following a drug related interruption to their education/career.
    • Relapse: When a person has been abstinent for a period and starts using drugs again.
    • Relapse prevention: Procedures to help a person in recovery from dependency to remain abstinent.
    • School community: Learners, educators and other school staff including Governing Bodies and parents/guardians.
    • Random drug testing/screening: Picking people at random to be tested (usually urine) for the presence of drugs in the body.
    • Experimentation: First time or infrequent use.
    • Use/occasional use: Infrequent/occasional use Misuse/Problematic use: Regular, if infrequent, use with damaging consequences
    • Dependency/Addiction: Loss of control. Continuing to use despite the harmful consequences.

14.9 SAFETY MEASURES AT SCHOOLS

14.9.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]
  • Employment of Educators Act 76 of 1998 [EEA]
  • Safety at Sports and Recreational Events Act 2 of 2010 [SSRE]

 

REGULATIONS

  • Regulations for Safety Measures at Public Schools (Government Gazette 22754, 12 October 2001 and 29376, 10 November 2006) [NR SMP]

 

GUIDELINES

  • School Infrastructure Safety and Security Guidelines – First version (DBE, 25 March 2017) [NG SAFETY]

 

OTHER

  • Also see Chapter 14.11 Some Important Aspects on Scholar Patrols at Public Schools

KwaZulu-Natal

POLICIES

  • KZN Policy on Smoking [Reference B4 SMOKING]

 

CIRCULARS

  • KZN HRM No 20 of 2009 dated 26 February 2009: Provision for Administration of Medicine at Schools [Reference B4 20/2009]
  • KZN unnumbered Circular dated 3 March 2009: Implementation of Security Clearance Strategy and Procedure Manual on Security Clearance Strategy KZN [Reference B4 SECURITY]

WesternCape

POLICIES

  • WCED Smoking Policy [Reference B9 SMOKING]

 

GUIDELINES

  • Guidelines on Playground Safety in Public Schools [Reference B9 PLAYGROUND]
  • Safety in School Science Policy and Protocol [Reference B9 SAFETY]

NorthernCape

POLICIES

14.9.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Safety Measures At Schools

  1. Definitions
    In these Regulations any word or expression to which a meaning has been assigned in the Act, shall have that meaning and, unless the context indicates otherwise –

    • “dangerous object” means –
      • any explosive material or device;
      • any firearm or gas weapon;
      • any article, object or instrument which may be employed to cause bodily harm to a person, or to render a person temporarily paralysed or unconscious, or to cause damage to property; or
      • any object which the Minister may by notice in the Gazette declare to be a dangerous object for the purposes of these regulations; unless such objects are used for education purposes;
    • “HOD” means the Head of Education Department in a province;
    • “illegal drug” means any unlawful intoxicating or stupefying substance;
    • “public school premises” includes a building, structure, hall, room, office, convenience, land, enclosure, which is under the control of a public school, to which a member of the public has a right of access, or is usually admitted, or to which he or she may be admitted.
  2. Scope of applicability
    These regulations apply to all public schools.
  3. Application of other laws
    Notwithstanding the provisions of these Regulations, a public school is not exempted from complying with the provisions of any other applicable law and these Regulations are intended to support such applicable laws.
  4. Violence and drug free public schools
    • All public schools are hereby declared drug free and dangerous object free zones.
    • No person may –
      • allow any dangerous object in the public school premises;
      • carry any dangerous object in the public school premises;
      • store any dangerous object in the public school premises except in officially designated places identified by the principal;
      • possess illegal drugs on public school premises;
      • enter public school premises while under the influence of an illegal drug or alcohol;
      • cause any form of violence or disturbances which can negatively impact on any public school activities;
      • wittingly condone, connive, hide, abet, encourage possession of dangerous objects or refuse, fail, neglect to report the sighting or presence of any dangerous objects to the departmental authorities or the police as soon as possible;
      • directly or indirectly cause harm to anyone, who exposes another person who makes an attempt to frustrate the prevention of the dangerous objects and activities.
    • A police official or in his absence, the principal or delegate may, without warrant –
      • search any public school premises if he or she has a reasonable suspicion that a dangerous object or illegal drugs may be present in the public school premises in contravention of the regulations;
      • search any person present on the public school premises; and
      • seize any dangerous object or illegal drugs present on public school premises or on the person in contravention of these regulations.
  5. Access to public schools premises
    • Subject to the Constitution, laws and national and provincial policies, the HOD or principal of any public school may and for such timeframes as may be necessary –
      • take such steps as he or she may consider necessary for the safeguarding of the public school premises, as well as for the protection of the people therein; and
      • direct that the school may only be entered in accordance with the provisions of the following:
        • No person shall without the permission of the principal or HOD enter into any public school premises in respect of which a direction has been issued according the above, and for the purpose of the granting of that permission the principal or HOD may require of the person concerned to –
          • furnish his or her name, address and any other relevant information required by the principal or HOD;
          • produce proof of his or her identity to the satisfaction of the principal or HOD if necessary;
          • declare whether he or she has any dangerous object or illegal drugs in his or her possession or custody or under his or her control;
          • declare what the contents are of any vehicle, suitcase, attaché case, bag, handbag. folder, envelope, parcel or container of any nature which he or she has in his or her possession or custody or under his or her control, and show those contents to him or her;
          • subject himself or herself and anything which he or she has in his or her possession or custody or under his or her control to a search by a person of the same gender, an examination by an electronic device, sniffer dogs or other apparatus in order to determine the presence of any dangerous object or illegal drug; and
          • hand to the principal or HOD anything which he or she has in his or her possession or custody or under his or her control for examination or custody until he or she leaves the premises.
    • Without derogation of the provisions of the Trespass Act, 1959 (Act No. 6 of 1959), the principal or HOD may at any time remove any person from any public school premises if –
      • that person enters the public school premises concerned without the permission of the principal or the HOD;
      • that person refuses or fails to observe any steps contemplated; and
      • the principal or HOD considers it necessary for the safeguarding of the public school premises concerned or for the protection of the people thereon.
    • If it is not practicable to examine or keep in custody, on or in the public school premises concerned, anything which may be examined or kept in custody, may be removed to a suitable place for that purpose.
  6. Exemption of certain persons
    The provisions of the previous regulation do not apply in respect of any member of a police service established by or under any law, a member of the South African Defence Force, the Minister of Education, the Member of the Executive Council responsible for education in a province or an official of the Department or provincial departments of Education who is required in the performance of his or her functions to enter or enters upon any public school premises and who produces proof of his or her identity to the satisfaction of the principal or HOD concerned.
  7. Visits to public schools by public and political office bearers
    • Members of the public and political office bearers, public representatives and the media have a right to visit public schools in the interests of public accountability, but this right must be regulated to ensure that schools are not disrupted by such visits, and to avoid the politicisation of such visits. This right is subjected to reasonable controls to ensure the proper functioning of education.
    • It such visits are desired, the person intending to visit must request and obtain written permission from the principal or HOD prior to the visit. The request must be made at least thirty days before the intended visit, unless there are sound reasons for a shorter notification period. This request must clearly indicate the date, time and purpose of the visit, the names of all participants, and the aspects which are intended to be looked at. The principal of the public school shall not refuse reasonable access to a person who has such written permission.
    • In cases where the written permission is granted by the HOD, the HOD, before granting such permission must consult the principal of the public school to be visited, to determine whether it is feasible for them to receive such a visit, and whether or not the school programme is likely to be seriously affected thereby.
    • Wherever possible a Departmental office-based representative should accompany such visitors.
  8. Visits to public schools by parents
    • Parents have the right to visit the public school where their children have been admitted but such visits may not disrupt any of the school activities.
    • Parents are required to make an appointment with the principal of the school for a personal appointment with him or her prior to the visit and must state the reason for the visit and the persons who may be involved during the visit.
  9. General
    • All public schools must display clear signs at the entrance that any person who enters the school may be subjected to a search.
    • Any person who contravenes these regulations may be removed from the public school premises.
    • Public schools must cooperate with police stations to ensure that visible policing is present during all sporting and cultural events at the school.
    • Public schools must encourage governing body members and parents to participate in community policing forums.
    • Public schools must develop action plans to counter threats of violence which have the potential to have a negative impact on school activities and to implement regulation 4(1).
    • The plans in sub regulation (5) must ensure the safety of all learners, staff members and parents during school activities.
    • Public schools must engage in advocacy campaigns to communicate to the public the status of the schools concerning the regulations and the right to protection against violence.
    • The HOD must provide guidelines to assist the public schools in developing the action plans contemplated in sub regulations (5) to (7).
    • The HOD must be provided with action plans contemplated in sub regulations (5) to (7) within 6 months after the commencement of the Regulations.
  10. CCTV Cameras
    In view of the above general remarks, “the use of these (CCTV) cameras is increasingly becoming a further security mechanism in schools as well. Cameras are amazing security tools to everyone in the school, especially for teachers in the classroom. That is… if they are utilised correctly.”
    See also: CCTV Cameras – Keeping everyone honest (SAOU Legal Services – 2/2017)
  11. Delegation of powers
    • The HOD may, on such conditions as he or she may determine, delegate the exercise of any of his or her powers under these regulations and the performance of any of his or her duties in terms of these regulations to any employee in the Provincial Department of Education.

Also see Chapter 1.3 Developing of Policies

14.10 TEENAGE PREGNANCY

14.10.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The South African Constitution Act 108 of 1996 [SAC]
  • The South African Schools Act, No. 84 of 1996 [SASA]

 

POLICIES

  • National Policy on HIV/AIDS for Learners and Educators, Government Gazette No. 20372 of 10 August 1999 [NP 20372/1999]

 

GUIDELINES

  • Teenage pregnancy in South Africa: With a specific focus on school going learners, National Department of Education (2009), commissioned by Unicef [TEENAGE PREGNANCY]
  • Measures for the Prevention and Management of Learner Pregnancy, National Department of Education (2007) [PREGNANCY MANAGEMENT]

14.10.2Framework for the development of school policy on learner pregnancies

  1. Legislative Principles
    • The Constitution states that “everyone has the right to basic education” Section 29(1). Section 9 (3), the equality clause, reads “the state may not unfairly discriminate directly or indirectly against anyone on one or more grounds, including race, gender, sex, pregnancy, marital status, ethnic or social origin, colour, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, culture, language and birth.”
      Section 12 (2) states that “everyone has the right to bodily and psychological integrity, which includes the right to make decisions concerning reproduction; to security in and control over their body and not to be subjected to medical and scientific experiments without their informed consent.”
      Section 29 (1) states that “everyone has the right to basic education, including adult basic education, and to further education, which the state through reasonable measures, must make progressively available and accessible.”  The right to basic education does not exclude pregnant learners.
    • In order to comply with the Constitution of South Africa in terms of the right of everyone to basic education, the South African Schools Act No 84 of 1996 stipulates that it is compulsory for every learner under the age of fifteen to attend school. If a learner fails to attend school, the Head of Department may investigate the circumstances of the learner’s absence from school and take appropriate measures to remedy the situation according to Section 3 (1) and 3 (5)(b). A pregnant learner may absent herself from school and she may eventually “drop-out” of school. This has severe implications not only for the learner but also for the country as a whole. Appropriate measures should be taken to ensure that this does not happen. The South African Schools Act, 1996 stipulates that a public school must admit learners and serve their educational requirements without unfairly discriminating in any way. In terms of this Act, not admitting a pregnant learner or expelling a pregnant learner is unfair discrimination and unconstitutional.
    • National Policy on HIV/AIDS for Learners and Educators (Government Gazette No. 20372 of August 1999) which states that “…there are high levels of sexually active persons within the learner population group in schools. This increases the risk of HIV transmission in schools and institutions for further education and training considerably.  Besides sexuality education, morality and life skills education being provided by educators, parents and guardians should be encouraged to provide their children with healthy morals, sexuality education, and guidance regarding sexual abstinence until marriage, and faithfulness to their partners”.
  2. Department of Education Policies and Principles
    • The Department of Education strongly advocates abstinence from sexual activity among learners. Programmes emphasising abstinence, targeting both boys and girls, should be in place in all public schools.
    • In accordance with the Constitution, the South African Schools Act, and the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act (No 4 of 2000), school children who are pregnant shall not be unfairly discriminated against.
    • Accordingly, in July 2000, the Council of Education Ministers issued a statement indicating that pregnant learners may not be expelled from schools.
  3. The Prevention of Learner Pregnancy
    • The National Department of Education strives to ensure that learners, both boys and girls, are educated about the likely outcomes of engaging in sexual activity, and to assist young people to make choices that protect their health and support their access to educational opportunities. Schools should provide programmes to ensure that all, whatever their situation, receive information and guidance to:
      • Encourage them to attend school every day;
      • Stay on in school;
      • Practise healthy lifestyles, and
      • Make appropriate and informed decisions about activities that will impact on their future health and educational prospects.
    • Prevention programmes should be offered in collaboration with NGOs and other agencies, and should provide information and education that builds upon the learner’s own knowledge, skills values and attitudes. As a targeted prevention measure, schools should provide special guidance and support to vulnerable learners, who are most at risk.
    • The National Curriculum Statement provides for comprehensive Life Skills programmes in the Learning Area Life Orientation, which is compulsory from Grade R to 12. Life Skills Education is a programme that deals with topics that effect each and every learner and educator.  Life Skills programmes include the following topics:
      • Human sexuality;
      • Developing and maintaining self-esteem;
      • Interpersonal and decision-making skills, including communication skills, negotiating abstinence, assertiveness, and dealing with peer pressure;
      • Teenage pregnancy, including contributory factors, consequences, and prevention;
      • Sexually transmitted diseases; and
      • Sexual abuse, including the “touch continuum”, gender-based violence, incest and rape.
    • While some of these topics may be difficult to teach because of the sensitive nature of the issues addressed, it is important that suitable educators are prepared to do so and are equipped to deal with any issues which affect learners. Peer education as an approach must be emphasised and incorporated in any intervention programme, due to its proven ability as a method to tackle such issues I an open manner, and to change both attitudes and behaviour.  Importantly also, successes must be identified and celebrated in order to reinforce positive behaviour changes among learners.
    • Prevention programmes should also involve parents and guardians through:
      • Their involvement in the governance of the school, and in the development of the school’s Code of Conduct, with specific strategies to eliminate learner pregnancy;
      • Providing information and support through school newsletters, circulars and meetings;
      • Workshops on pertinent issues (effective parenting, values in education, identifying substance abuse, preventing gender-based violence, as well as information on HIV and AIDS);
      • Creating links between the school and community it serves, and supporting community activities;
      • Developing and sharing a common vision regarding the well-being of the community of the community’s children; and
      • Supporting healthy lifestyles through positive role modelling, encouraging learners to participate in sporting and cultural activities, and advocacy and awareness on the positive consequences of a healthy lifestyle.
  4. The Management of Unplanned Pregnancies at School
    • In cases where prevention measures fail and learners do fall pregnant, the education system is obliged to manage the situation by balancing the best interests of the individual against those of other learners, educators, the school and its community. The aim of this management plan is therefore to help and support the learner who is pregnant, to guide the father of the child, if he is also a learner, regarding his responsibilities, as well as to assist other learners, staff members and parents who are affected by the pregnancy.
    • In the first instance, every case must be dealt with confidentially. Parents or guardians should only be informed and involved after consultation with the learner involved, although confidentiality is not an option when the learner or others are at risk.
    • An inclusive approach to education outlines our commitment to the provision of educational opportunities for learners who experience or have experienced barriers to learning, or who are at risk because of the inability of the education and training system to accommodate their special learning needs.
    • The guiding principle of these management interventions must therefore be an appropriate response in order to safeguard the educational interests of the learner. Each situation should be assessed and evaluated on a regular basis.
    • In the event of a learner becoming pregnant, the following procedures are recommended, with consequent roles and responsibilities for learners, educators, schools and provincial Departments of Education.

Learners

  • A learner who is pregnant, or has reason to believe she may be pregnant, should immediately inform someone in the school, preferably a senior educator designated by the principal. The designated educator or educators should take responsibility for the implementation and management of these measures, on behalf of the school.  A learner who is aware that another learner is pregnant must also immediately inform the school.
  • Wherever possible, and as soon as possible, the learner should be referred by the school to a health clinic or centre, and provide to the school, on a regular basis, a record of attendance. Health professionals should provide advice to the learner regarding termination of pregnancy options, and any other necessary information.
  • Learners must be sensitised that there are no medical staff to handle the delivery of babies at school, and the potential health risks and trauma to the mother, new-born child and the rest of the school community arising from a hidden pregnancy, or if the child is delivered at the school. The learner (and the father, if a learner) may therefore request, or be required to take a leave of absence from the school, including sufficient time to address both pre- and post-natal health concerns, as well as the initial caring for the child.  No pre-determined period is specified for this purpose, since it will depend entirely on the circumstances of each case.  However it is the view of the Department of Education that learners as parents should exercise full responsibility for parenting, and that a period of absence of up to two years may be necessary for this purpose.  No learner should be re-admitted in the same year that they left school due to a pregnancy.
  • Before returning to school, the learner must produce a medical report declaring that she is fit to resume classes. The learner must also be made aware that, after childbirth, the rights of the newly born baby must be protected, and she should be able to demonstrate to the school that proper arrangements have been made for the care and safety of the child.
  • A school should avoid any action that may constitute unfair discrimination against a pregnant learner. However the pregnant learner should also understand that some members of the school community might not readily accept and be supportive of their situation because of the value systems to which they subscribe.

Parents and guardians

  • Parents and guardians may not be absolved from their responsibilities regarding their pregnant child, and have to take the lead in working with the school to support and monitor their child’s health and progress. Parents and guardians should therefore ensure that the school is timeously informed about the condition of their child, ensure that she attends a health clinic, and that reports are communicated to the school.
  • Parents or guardians should take steps to ensure that as far as is possible their child receives her class tasks and assignments during any period of absence from the school, and that all completed tasks and assignments are returned to the school for assessment.

Schools

  • Schools should strongly encourage learners to continue with their education prior to and after the delivery of the baby. Educators should therefore continue offering educational support to the learner, within reasonable limits, and in whatever ways possible given the particular context.
  • In addition, schools should strive to ensure the existence of a climate of understanding and respect in regard to unplanned pregnancies, and should put in place appropriate mechanisms to deal with complaints of unfair discrimination, hate speech or harassment that may arise. These may include:
    • Name-calling of a sexual nature, or jokes demeaning the dignity of a person, self-image and concept;
    • Written or graphic discrimination in the form of notes or suggestive material relating to the pregnant learner; and
    • Breaking confidentiality in a condemning or judgemental manner.
  • Where possible, learners, after giving birth, should be afforded with advice and counselling on motherhood and child rearing. The Life Orientation educator, counsellor, or psychological services staff member if available, or any other suitable person, should offer the mother, and the father, if also a learner, counselling on their roles and responsibilities as parents.  Schools should inform the Department of Social Development about pregnant learners, and where applicable, assist in registering these learners for child grants.  They may also refer the learners to relevant support services, such as social workers or NGO’s operating in the community.
  • Schools should ensure that a record of learner pregnancies is maintained, and that reports are submitted to the relevant authorities in the provincial Department of Education. Schools should also ensure that if informed of alleged cases of rape (including statutory rape), as defined in the The Sexual Offences Act 32 of 2007 [SOA], they report the case to the police.

14.10.3Guidelines for the development of effective curriculum based programmes

In reviewing 19 of the most effective curricula for sex-based education, Kirby (2007) identified 17 characteristics that were common to these programmes.  These characteristics, presented in the Table 1 below, can be clustered into three categories (Table 2 below): the process of developing the curriculum, the content of the curriculum and the process of the implementation.

Table 1:  Sources of information related to HIV and AIDS for young people in SA 

SOURCE TYPE OF ACTIVITY
National multimedia campaigns
Khomanani
loveLife
Soul City
Soul Buddyz
National multi-media HIV and AIDS campaigns and programmes including communication via mass media (television, radio, print, outdoor media) and including interactive participation
Television series
Tsha Tsha
Gazlam
Beat It
National HIV and AIDS-focused television series broadcast nationally on prime time
Non-campaign related mass media News features, documentaries, talk shows, statistics etc. with HIV and AIDS content broadcast and published nationally and internationally
School-based life-skills National life-skills education programmes including HIV and AIDS interactive participation
Provincial campaigns
Local campaigns
Health systems, clinics, hospitals
Local organizations focused on HIV
Faith-based organisations
HIV and AIDS communication via mass media and including international participation
Direct experience of HIV and AIDS  This includes personally knowing people who are positive, knowing those who have died; interaction with friends and relatives about HIV and AIDS; being orphaned as a result of AIDS etc.

Table 2: Characteristics of effective curriculum-based programmes 

 

PROCESS OF DEVELOPING THE CURRICULUM CONTENT OF THE CURRICULUM IMPLEMENTATION OF THE CURRICULUM
Involve multiple people with expertise in theory, research, and STI/HIV education to develop the curriculum Focus on clear health goals, e.g. prevention of STI/HIV/pregnancy or all three Secure support from the appropriate authorities, such as departments of health, school districts or community organisations
Assess the relevant needs and assets of the target group Focus specifically on behaviour leading to goals e.g., using condoms, give clear messages about behaviour, address the situations that lead to them, and how to avoid STIs, HIV and pregnancy Select educators with the desired characteristics (where possible), train them, and provide monitoring, supervision and support
Use a logical model (health and psychosocial theory) to specify health goals, behaviours that affect goals, risk and protective factors affecting behaviour and activities to change risk and protective factors Address sexual risk and protective factors that affect sexual behaviour (e.g. knowledge, perceived risk, value, attitudes, norms and self-efficacy) and change them If required, implement activities to recruit and keep adolescents to overcome barriers to participation (e.g., publicise the programme, offer food or obtain parental consent)
Design activities consistent with community values and available resources, (e.g. staff time, skills, space and supplies Create a safe space for young people to participate Implement virtually all activities with reasonable fidelity
Pilot-test the programme Include multiple activities to change risk and protective factors
Use instructionally-sound teaching methods that actively involve participants, help them personalise information and are designed to change risk and protective factors
Use activities, teaching methods, and behavioural messages appropriate to the adolescents’ culture, developmental age, and sexual experience
Cover topics in a logical sequence

Also see Chapter 1.3 Developing of Policies

14.11 SCHOLAR PATROLS AT PUBLIC SCHOOLS

14.11.1Legislative and Policy Framework

ACTS

  • The Road Traffic Act 93 of 1996, section 57.5 [RTA]
  • The Children’s Act 38 of 2005 [CA]
  • The Bill of Rights in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, Act No. 108 of 1996 Section 28 [BoR]

 

GUIDELINES

  • South African Road Traffic Signs Manual (SADCRTSM 11/97) as prescribed by the National Road Traffic Act [SARTSM]
  • The Arrive Alive Traffic Scholar Patrol Manual [AATSM]

NorthernCape

REGULATIONS

  • Examination Instructions: E86/2017; Management and administration of subject changes in Grades 10-12 (4 October 2017) [Reference B7 E86/2017]

14.11.2Framework for the Development of School Policy on Scholar Patrols at Public Schools

Scholar Patrol is an important part of road safety education and essential to enhancing the safety of our learners at their schools. Not only does it regulate traffic, improve traffic calming and facilitate safe crossing of the road but also instils in the minds of our young pedestrians an awareness of the importance of road safety.

The Road Traffic Act (Act 93 of 1996), section 57.5 determines:

“In such circumstances and subject to such conditions as the MEC concerned may determine, scholars or students may be organised into patrols (to be known as scholars’ patrols) for the purpose of displaying, in the prescribed manner, an appropriate road traffic sign so as to ensure the safety of scholars or students crossing a public road”.

Children’s Act (Section 2 Objects of Act) determines:

S 2 (b) (iv) “to give effect to the following constitutional rights of children, namely- that the best interests of a child are of paramount importance in every matter concerning the child;”

S 2 (d) “to make provision for structures, services and means for promoting and monitoring the sound physical, psychological, intellectual, emotional and social development of children;”

S 2 (i) “generally, to promote the protection, development and well-being of children.”

  1. Implementation
    • As laid down by the Road Traffic Act (Act 93 of 1996), section 57.5, learners can be organized into patrols (known as scholar patrols) in order to display a stop sign in the prescribed manner (SADCRTSM 11/97, section 2.8) so that the safety of pedestrians crossing a public street or road can be ensured.
    • It is a function of provincial government to support the establishment of scholar patrols where there is a need and where it is demanded by circumstances.
    • Where needed, and when requested by school principals and/or recommended by traffic authorities, the aid and assistance of the relevant provincial government should be given to assist with the functioning of scholar patrols.
    • The provincial government arranges insurance cover against collisions and claims resulting from events occurring during the legal functioning of scholar patrols.
    • Equipment and guidelines for the implementation and functioning of scholar patrols is provided by the provincial government.
  2. Registration and Authorization
    • When a scholar patrol is requested by a school, the traffic authority decides on the position and number of scholar patrol crossings in consultation with the school and provincial road safety component.
    • The province provides a registration form (SP1) of which sections A and B are completed by the principal, and section C by the traffic authority. The traffic authority then forwards the form to the province for registration onto a computerised database.
    • After registration copies of the registration form are sent to the traffic authority and the school. These must be safe-guarded for inspection as well as any queries regarding the operation of scholar patrols.
    • Implementation of a scholar patrol will not take place until training of the whole scholar patrol team has been completed, the relevant road markings are applied and pre-warning signs have been erected. On confirmation of this having been done, scholar patrol equipment will be issued to the school by the province.
    • Any changes to a crossing, that is, additions, cancellations and change in location are done by means of the SP3 form.
      Please refer to the Arrive Alive website to obtain the SP1 and SP2 forms.
      For the SP3 form, please contact the relevant Provincial authority.
  3. Organisation
    • A scholar patrol at a school consists of two teams, which relieve each other on an alternating schedule basis. This is done at the discretion of the responsible educator and can be done daily or weekly.
    • The members of the patrol are chosen and appointed by the responsible educator.
    • Before a learner can become a member of a scholar patrol, a letter of consent (SP2) must be completed by the relevant learners’ parent/guardian and this is kept at the school whilst a copy is sent to the traffic department.  These documents must be available for inspection by the traffic authority and the province at all times.
    • Scholar patrol team members must be at least eight (08) years old.
    • The type of scholar patrol crossing determines the composition, functioning and equipment of the team.
    • There must be one captain on duty for each team at every crossing.
    • All the members of the team on duty arrive at the school at a time determined by the school / responsible educator and remain on duty until a time decided by the school / responsible educator. In the afternoon they do duty again from before the final bell rings until necessary. At the end of the day, educators must excuse scholar patrol members timeously to enable them to get dressed and be in position before the rest of the school is dismissed for the day. It is compulsory that members must be in Scholar Patrol gear when on duty.
  4. Duties of role Players
    • The School
      The school (Governing Body) is responsible for the efficient establishment and functioning of a scholar patrol.  Should it not be possible for the principal to exert direct control over this, the responsibility should be delegated to a suitable educator.

      • The principal or responsible educator should:
        • In conjunction with the applicable traffic authority and the relevant provincial authority, determine the need for pedestrian crossings at streets adjacent to the school premises;
        • Fill in section A and B of the SP1 application form and forward the completed form to the traffic authority;
        • Control and regulate matters pertaining to the scholar patrol, such as composition of parental involvement, equipment and functioning in conjunction with the local traffic authority and the province;
        • See to it that the parents of scholar patrol team members have completed the letter of consent (SP2) and keep these safe at the school with a copy having been sent to the traffic authority;
        • Respond to complaints and requests of scholar patrol members;
        • Exert control over all equipment and supervise, at all times, the functioning of the scholar patrol;
        • Arrange for the training of scholar patrol members;
        • Inform all learners about the correct use of scholar patrol crossings;
        • Should a collision occur, report this to the police and the traffic authority and follow up with a written report.
    • Captain
      Each scholar patrol has a captain who is responsible for the overall operation of the team.
      The captain’s duties are as follows:

      • Reports directly to the principal or the supervising educator;
      • Compiles the team correctly and sees to it that they act in accordance with regulations;
      • Completes the register before every duty;
      • Inspects the team prior to every duty to ensure that they are dressed according to regulations and that they have all the necessary equipment;
      • Is responsible for ensuring that the teams place the pre-warning signs correctly (if applicable);
      • Is responsible for reporting to the principal or the responsible educator should the road signs become unclear or damaged;
      • Is responsible for seeing to it that the team stands either BEHIND the kerbstone or on the shoulder of the road, as indicated by the traffic authority;
      • Sees to it that the leader and the team members do their work correctly and in accordance with regulations;
      • Sees to it that the equipment is stored and maintained correctly;
      • Maintains discipline at all times;
      • Keeps a notebook to note down irregularities and reports these to the responsible educator after duty;
      • Assists teams to control pedestrians where needed;
      • Sees to it that the traffic flow is not unnecessarily impeded.
    • Leader
      Each crossing has a leader who is responsible for the operation of the crossing. The duties of the leader are as follows :

      • Assumes position on the side of the street towards which the pedestrians walk (i.e. always faces the pedestrians);
      • Acts as the captain’s right hand person and at all times supervises the team operating the crossing;
      • Controls the opening and closing of the crossing, as well as the pedestrians using the crossing, by using a whistle (Types A, B, G and H);
      • Controls the flow of pedestrians through the crossing at all times;
      • Ensures that the traffic flow is not unnecessarily impeded.
    • Members
      Each crossing is manned by a number of members as prescribed under the different kinds of crossings.
      Duties of the members are :

      • At types A, B and H crossings:
        • Place and remove the pre-warning signs (if applicable);
        • Use the poles and the stop sign boards on the instructions of the leader.
      • At all other types of crossings:
        • Control and regulate the pedestrians without applying traffic control;
        • Assist the captain in noting down traffic violations.
    • Traffic Authority
      The traffic authority, in conjunction with the relevant school and the local branch of road safety, decides on the establishment of scholar patrols. This also includes the positioning of pedestrian crossings other than those at traffic lights. The duties of the traffic authority are as follows:

      • Completion of section C of the SP1 and and section D of the SP3 (volunteer) form registration form and forwarding of the form to the province;
      • Recommendation that a scholar patrol be instituted where justified, and submission of the application to the province;
      • Assistance with the training of teams and adult supervisors/volunteers;
      • Regular inspection to ensure that the patrols function correctly and that all regulations pertaining to the Road Traffic Act are complied with;
      • Supplying of the necessary pre-warning signs and ensuring that these are used correctly and meet all the requirements of the Road Traffic Act;
      • Indication of the places where temporary pre-warning signs have to be placed should these be used;
      • Ensuring that the crossings are marked properly and in accordance with prescriptions;
      • Recommendation that curb stones be placed or that safety zones be erected / marked at each crossing;
      • Assistance with the delivery of the required equipment as supplied by the province to the schools;
      • Handling of all representations or complaints with regard to the implementation and functioning of scholar patrols before they are referred to the province;
      • Reporting to the province on any collision in which scholar patrol members might be involved whilst they were on duty;
      • Ensuring that vehicles are not parked in such a way that they impede visibility and endanger members of the scholar patrol;
      • Resumption of traffic control when the traffic becomes so dense that it becomes dangerous for the scholar patrols to operate.
    • The Province (Local Road Safety Component)
      The duties of the province with regard to scholar patrols involves the following:

      • Determining the need for a scholar patrol applied for in conjunction with the traffic authority;
      • Registration of the school and crossing(s);
      • Ensuring that the application form (SP1) and (SP3) has been correctly completed by all the relevant parties;
      • Distributing copies of the registration of the school and crossing(s) to the school and the traffic authority;
      • Dealing with all queries or requests from schools and authorities;
      • Training of traffic officers and/or educators;
      • Supplying of all scholar patrol equipment to the relevant schools and new patrols through the traffic authority;
      • Regular inspection of all schools and crossings to determine whether scholar patrols are operating in accordance with regulations;
      • Maintenance of up-to-date records of all registered schools and crossings.
    • Adult Supervisor
      • The Adult Supervisor is an adult person (person older than eighteen (18) years of age) who supervises the scholar patrol team in action. This involves checking that the correct procedures are followed and supplying assistance where necessary, especially with regard to crowd control or collision details.
      • Adult supervisors may be students (eg university / technikon, etc), retired persons, parents, educators, administrative or maintenance staff of the school, traffic officers, or any other adult. Whilst engaged in supervising the scholar patrol, they are covered by insurance.
        • Supervises the scholar patrol crossing at all times whilst in operation;
        • Notes any irregularities in the way the scholar patrol operates and reports these to the responsible educator;
        • Furnishes information for legal purposes should a claim arise due to the actions of the scholar patrol;
        • Furnishes information to the traffic authority should vehicles ignore the scholar patrol;
        • Sees to it that the captain performs according to the prescribed duties.
    • Parents / Guardians
      The parents/guardians of prospective patrol members should

      • Complete and sign the parent consent letter (SP2) and return it to the school before the learner is allowed to participate;
      • Support the school by seeing to it that the learner fulfils his/her task as a scholar patrol member responsibly and faithfully.
  5. Conditions of Use For Scholar Patrols
    • A scholar patrol may only operate at a registered crossing.
    • Should there not be a kerbstone or if the road is exceptionally wide at the pedestrian crossing, the members should either stand on the shoulder of the road or as indicated by the traffic authority. Where-ever possible the kerbstone must be used. Scholar patrol members may not stand on the road surface at any stage.
    • Members may under no circumstances move into the street to stop the traffic or to regulate it. At type A, B and H crossings the members of the patrol should only exhibit the stop sign boards horizontally with a movement of the body and arms, so that approaching drivers can see them clearly and stop in time.
    • The principal / responsible educator is held responsible for the proper supervision, storage and maintenance of the scholar patrol equipment. Should schools not comply with this requirement, their scholar patrols will be withdrawn.
    • Pre-warning signs must be erected irrespective of the type of crossing.
    • Adult supervision is compulsory and an absolute essential at all crossings.
    • Performance on gravel roads is permissible if the following are complied with:
      • Vision / line of sight in both directions has to be good (not at blind rises, corners, dense bush / trees / buildings next to road, etc);
      • Members may not stand on the road surface;
      • The local road safety component of the province should visit the crossing and ensure that the crossing complies with the prescribed safety requirements (the position of the crossings should be determined in conjunction with the applicable traffic authorities and the school);
      • Such a crossing would be registered as a Type G (Open Crossing).
    • Performance on provincial and national roads is permissible as long as  the following conditions have been complied with :
      • The position of the crossing should be determined in conjunction with the traffic authority, the school and the province (stress must be placed on adequate visibility);
      • The members of the scholar patrol as well as the learners should be trained with regard to the use of the crossing;
      • Controlled groups of children may cross the road per opportunity (once a group of children has crossed, the situation has to be re-evaluated for safety before the next group should be allowed to cross);
      • Such a crossing would be registered as a Type G (Open Crossing).
    • Action at stop signs and / or traffic light controlled crossings in urban, rural and remote areas: scholar patrols may not use stop sign boards at controlled crossings.  A stop-board operating scholar patrol may operate near to a controlled crossing only if no other solution is obtainable, but preferably to a minimum of 50 meters away from the controlled crossing;
      • Scholar patrol crossings do not have the purpose of serving as a solution for traffic offences (for example, motorists who do not stop at stop streets or yield to pedestrians);
      • The function of the scholar patrol at a crossing is only to regulate and control pedestrians.
  6. Insurance Cover
    • The provincial government has Public Liability and Personal Accident Cover.
    • The Public Liability Policy covers compensation with regard to the incidental death, physical injury or illness of third parties or the incidental loss of or physical damage to tangible third party property which occurs within the boundaries during the period of insurance, and which results from the activities of scholar patrols or their supervisors.
    • The insurance is only valid when the patrols function in accordance with the regulations as laid down, in approved crossings directly before or after school on official school days.
    • Personal Accident Cover covers incidental death, physical injury or illness of members of the scholar patrol team and its supervisors or the incidental loss of or physical damage to tangible personal property which occurs within the boundaries during the period of insurance, and which results from the activities of scholar patrols or their supervisors whilst operating a scholar patrol crossing or involved in any related activity (e.g. training).
    • Details of policies and cover can be obtained from the provincial road safety component.
    • Insurance claims procedure
      • Documentation
      • Copy of the parent letter(s) of consent (SP2) of the relevant scholar patrol member(s);
      • Copy of the registration form (SP1);
      • Report from the school;
      • Traffic authority and police report;
      • Completed claim form (will differ depending on insurance company);
      • Medical report on all injuries sustained;
      • Proof of all expenses regarding the collision (invoices/receipts).
    • Insurance
      • The insurance provided by the province only covers scholar patrol teams (captains, leaders and members), adult supervisors of scholar patrol teams (educators, adult volunteers from the community, principals, traffic officers and road safety related personnel) whilst on active scholar patrol duty (i.e. operation of scholar patrol crossings, training sessions and travel on official scholar patrol activities);
      • Scholar patrols must operate as indicated in the scholar patrol manual;
      • All relevant signage (advanced pre-warning signs, road markings and temporary scholar patrol signs) must be used;
      • Scholar patrols (and their supervisors) may at no time operate on the road surface nor undertake traffic control (in terms of point duty as performed by traffic officers);
      • Scholar patrols must wear the correct uniform and be under trained adult supervision at all times.
    • In spite of the province’s responsibility as set out above, it is advisable for the principal to request the Governing Body to consider additional insurance cover.

The Arrive Alive Traffic Scholar Patrol Manual can be consulted for a comprehensive framework to develop a Scholar Patrol School Policy.

Visit the Scholar Patrol and Road Safety website for documentation on:

  • copy of the parent letter(s) of consent (SP2) of the relevant scholar patrol member(s);
  • copy of the registration form (SP1);
  • report from the school;
  • traffic authority and police report;
  • completed claim form (will differ depending on insurance company);
  • medical report on all injuries sustained;
  • proof of all expenses regarding the collision (invoices/receipts).