In Solidarity with Heathfield High School and Wesley Neumann

 In Member statements

In Solidarity with Heathfield High School and Wesley Neumann

We note with concern recent revelations regarding the disciplinary hearing process of Heathfield High School principal, Wesley Neumann for refusing to open the school without proper access to PPE to ensure the safety of learners and staff. Affidavits revealing the extent to which elements of the Western Cape Education Department will go are a concern for the integrity of the education system in our land.


We stand by our initial analysis of the role of the “critical teacher” in society, the dangers of applying a business-mindset to education and the question of whose interests’ schools should serve.


We stand in solidarity with Heathfield High School as they resist the efforts of the WCED to suppress dissident voices rather than engage in constructive dialogue. We stand alongside others condemning attempts to solicit evidence in exchange for favour and commend those who expose these corrupt acts.


At the core of Mr. Neumann’s case is the simple fact that many of our schools simply do not have access to sufficient funding in “normal” times to acquire and maintain the equipment required to be COVID-19 compliant. We look toward the upcoming “austerity” budget speech with hopes that Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni will recognize the danger of retracting funding from schools especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.


We want for every child a school well-resourced to provide critical teachers who can stimulate the intellectual and creative capacities so that they can build a better world. If this is available to children at private and fortified public schools then this must be possible for all children. And if it is a question of affordability, then we must ask how it is that we can afford to pay for inflated PPE tenders.


Statement by the ECD & Education Working Group, of the C19 People’s Coalition

Contact person:

Vanessa Japtha –  (Co-convenor of the ECD & Ed WG)


Earlier ECD & Ed WG statement:


Recent statement by the WCED (condemning “despicable” tactics of Heathfield High Action Committee):


Original letter of Mr. Neumann’s and others to Ramaphosa:

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