Home South African Parents, teachers meet after learners hallucinate at Hammanskraal school

Parents, teachers meet after learners hallucinate at Hammanskraal school

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Seven learners were reportedly heard saying the same things at the same time while appearing to be in a trance and they told others that they saw something next to a water tap and in a ditch at the school.

Parents and management at Modilati Secondary School in Hammanskraal met to establish what happened when some learners reportedly fainted and hallucinated. Picture: File

Betty Moleya

PARENTS and management at Modilati Secondary School in Hammanskraal met on Tuesday to establish what happened when some learners reportedly fainted and hallucinated a few days ago.

The first incident happened on Friday two weeks ago, followed by another on Monday. On that Friday, seven learners were reportedly heard saying the same things at the same time while appearing to be in a trance. They told others that they saw something next to a water tap and in a ditch at the school.

Learning was disrupted on both days. Some parents said yesterday that they believed it was spiritually related. They called a traditional healer to intervene and cleanse the school.

Others blamed it all on drugs.

A parent, who wanted to remain anonymous, said he was called to the school because his daughter, who is in Grade 12, started experiencing problems. “When I saw my daughter, she could not speak or tell us what was wrong.

They said she had a calling. She does not; if she did what happened to her was not going to happen to 10 other children at the same time.”

School governing body chairperson Pule Theledi said yesterday’s meeting was to find solutions together with the school, parents and the department. “On Friday, we were informed that some learners were running around the school disturbing classes, and that some were fainting. Teachers did their best to take care of the learners and called their parents.”

He said he could not confirm that drugs may have caused the incidents.

Theledi said something similar had happened when he was a pupil at the school in 1985.

The school has about 1,500 learners and 52 teachers. On Tuesday, despite the meeting, classes continued as usual.

The Gauteng Department of Education said it was aware of the incident in which seven learners had reportedly hallucinated and shown signs of spiritual manifestations on February 25. “We intervened and dispatched officials and a psychosocial team to the school to offer support to all affected.

But they could not access the school due to the disruptive behaviour of a few community members. Police had to be called in to restore order. We are monitoring the situation.”

Pretoria News

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