Of these, six toilets are for the Grade Rs only.
Alpine Primary School in Beacon Valley was shut this week as angry moms and dads removed their children after hearing the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) had not appointed a contractor to repair the broken toilets, forcing boys and girls to use the same facilities.
A meeting was called on Tuesday but after parents heard the matter had allegedly not been reported to the WCED, they marched onto the school grounds yesterday, demanding answers about how the latest break-in happened with security guards present.
They say skelms broke into the school during the holidays and trashed the boys’ toilets, stealing water pipes, smashing the toilet bowls and even stealing an entire toilet pot.
Mom Faranaaz Williams, 46, says she received a notification to collect her son earlier in the week after the school was closed due to the water being cut off.
“It happened during the school holiday so why did they not tell us on the first day of school?” she says.
“We had a meeting and decided to protest because we are gatvol of the vandalism and the department does nothing, they then have security but they can’t answer how this happened.”
Mabel Khana of the School Governing Body (SGB) says a total of 1300 children used the remaining toilets, and says during 2019, the school had been vandalised 20 times.
“The boys and girls were using one set of toilets and parents became angry because each time the department says the school has been prioritised but there is no improvement.
“Also the skelms got in because the roof of the toilet was broken and the WCED never fixed it,” Khana says.
Shortly after 10am, police arrived at the school to calm the crowd but angry children and parents pushed a police bakkie off the property, saying cops weren’t around when the break-ins happened but came to protect the principal.
“Sy bel die polisie maar ons wil net met haar praat, ons gaan haar mos nie moer nie. Vir wat is sy bang?” a mom was heard shouting.
The principal declined to comment.
WCED spokesperson, Bronagh Hammond, says at the end of last year, three classrooms and the toilet facilities were badly vandalised.
“This affected the boys’ toilet facilities only. The ceilings, water pipes, urinals and toilets were all vandalised, and stationery, copy paper and an air conditioner were stolen.
“The estimated cost of the damages is over R150 000.
“A contractor was appointed, but unfortunately did not carry out the required work.
“A second contractor was then appointed and site handover to repair the toilets was yesterday [Tuesday].
“They are currently obtaining the required materials for the repairs.
“The school has an alarm system and security guards,” she confirmed.
Officials brought 10 portable toilets to the school yesterday but angry parents rejected them.
They vowed to return and protest until the contractor starts repairs.