The 13-year-old primary school boy who attacked a female teacher has been arrested.
The Grade 6 Harmony Primary School learner was caught on camera hitting and kicking Educator Assistant Arlene Petersen, 32, on Thursday morning at the school in front of fellow learners and other teachers.
Police confirmed the boy was arrested on Friday after Arlene laid a charge of assault.
Police spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk said: “A 13-year-old boy was arrested on Friday, 3 December 2021, and released in the care of his parents on a warning to appear in the Wynberg Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, 8 December 2021.”
According to Arlene, from Lavender Hill, who joined the Steenberg school a month ago, this was the second time the child had attacked her.
Two weeks prior, he allegedly tried to hit her with a brick in class.
She screamed for help and other teachers came to her rescue.
Thursday’s incident at around 8am was filmed by another EA who witnessed the incident.
In the video, the boy demands a tennis ball back that the teacher had confiscated from another pupil.
“Give me my ball, miss,” he says as he repeatedly reaches for her pocket, while she tells him: “Don’t touch me, go to your class.”
As three men intervene, the boy lashes out and kicks Arlene.
As they lead him away, he breaks loose, runs to Arlene and hits her twice with his fist.
Western Cape Education Department spokesperson Millicent Merton said the school will be taking disciplinary action against the pupil and providing support to Arlene.
According to Arlene, the boy has a history of bullying at the school but the principal has not taken action against him.
“Since the first incident, I heard his mother and sister also fear him at home, and at school, teachers and other pupils are afraid of him.”
She said she is happy that the WCED has now intervened and hopes the boy, and long-suffering teachers, will get the help they deserve.
“I’m glad justice is taking its course, I hope this is a wake-up call for the boy and that there is an intervention.
“I’m really glad that the WCED placed educator assistants in schools so we can see first-hand what teachers deal with on a daily basis and we can actually speak up about it without fear of victimisation, because we only remain at the schools for four months.
“Even though schools have anti-bullying campaigns for learners, nothing has been put in place for protecting our teachers.”