WCED spokesperson Bronagh Hammond said Loren Arries-Hendricks incited other personnel to non-procedural and/or unlawful conduct by telling them not to report for duty during the pandemic.
“Arries-Hendricks is the only employee charged at this time. The WCED is guided by national labour legislation,” said Hammond.
But Arries-Hendricks, 52, said she was surprised at the charge as she “can’t even remember what the department alleges me to have said to other teachers”.
“Yes, I am an activist and I was active during the July shutdown with others of course, and we were supported by communities,” she said.
Arries-Hendricks began teaching in 1989 before taking a break in 2002, and recently returned to the classroom.
She said she was shocked at the many regulations that teachers were being subjected to, “with some infringing on their rights”.
Brian Isaacs, interim secretary for The Progressive Organisation Formation, said the WCED has started a process of intimidating teachers who speak out for the health and safety of the pupils.
“Even President Cyril Ramaphosa has now decided that most pupils only return to school after four weeks,” he said.
Hammond said as stated by Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga on 14 July, the Meeting of Council Education Ministers has resolved to take legal action against all individuals and groups that continue to disrupt schooling.