DEMOBILISED EDUCATIONAL PARENTING
Hundreds of pupils and their teachers routinely arrived late for the start of lessons in the mornings at Lavela Secondary School in Zola North, Soweto. Some would arrive as late as an hour after the start of the school day.
It took the spectacle of the horrified MEC of Education in Gauteng, Barbara Creecy, standing at the gate of this school watching this mass late coming, to bring this scandal to the attention of the country. Creecy threatened, rightly, fire and brimstone if the situation is not corrected immediately and the following morning, police were at the school to add muscle to her threats.
The obvious and immediate questions that come to mind are: Where are the parents? What do they think and say about that wholly unacceptable situation at the school of their children? Does Lavela Secondary School have a school governing body? Why don't we hear anything about the governing body in this mess? Why do we need the whole MEC of education and the police to attend to a matter like this?
The month of March 2012 is devoted to the elections of school governing bodies throughout the country. These governing bodies bring together teachers and parents for the proper running of schools.
If the truth be told, the functioning of governing bodies is poor in most township and rural schools. These are also the areas where parental involvement in the education of their children is either non-existent or hopelessly poor. Governing bodies work much better in suburban and more affluent areas of our country.