By Buziwe Nocuze
A heartbreaking incident of relentless bullying has left an eight-year-old learner on the verge of giving up on school.
Because of her looks, the grade 3 learner from Nomsa Maphongwana Primary School in Khayelitsha, Cape Town has been subjected to constant torment, causing her to feel isolated and unsupported.
The distressed learner, whose name has been withheld to protect her identity, finally confided in her mother, who was also mistreated when she was at school.
In an emotional conversation with Scrolla.Africa, the 30-year-old mother said they are not physically handicapped but people say they are not pretty.
“When my daughter told me about how nobody wants to sit with or play with her, it opened old wounds. It was the same for me because I was like that at school. Nobody wanted to associate with me either, because of my looks,” she said.
“I also lost my confidence and never said anything at school. Even if I knew the answers I wouldn’t say anything. During presentations I wouldn’t go to school to avoid standing in front of the class and being ridiculed.”
The child’s mother hopes the Department of Education will intervene. “My daughter has said if they continue laughing at her she will stop going to school. Other learners keep asking why she looks different and then ignore her,” she said.
The mother said she was hoping for counselling for both of them. “I can’t even lift my daughter’s spirits because I still feel the pain of what happened during my school days,” she said.
“I still find it difficult to make eye contact when I speak to people.”
Lindelwa Dlakavu, a 40-year-old parent, suggested implementing at least three sessions a week, dedicated to talking about the dangers of bullying.
Western Cape Education spokesperson, Millicent Merton, said immediate action was taken once the parent alerted the class teacher.
Pictured above: A grade 3 learner almost quit school following bullying incidents. Learners allegedly bully her because of her looks.
Image Credit: Buziwe Nocuze