A bargaining chamber for teachers has ordered the Gauteng Education Department to reinstate the principal of Parktown Boys' High School, Malcolm Williams, after he was fired in December last year following the death of a grade eight pupil at a school camp, says a TimesLIVE report. 

Enock Mpianzi (13) drowned in the Crocodile River on 15 January last year during an excursion. He and some other boys were on a makeshift raft that overturned hours after they arrived at the camp.

The Education Labour Relations Council ordered the department to reinstate Williams from 8 December 2020, the day he was dismissed. He must report for duty on 1 July. The department was also ordered to pay Williams an amount of R285 594 – equivalent to six months of his salary – by 30 July.

Williams argued that his dismissal on two counts of alleged misconduct was substantively and procedurally unfair.

The first allegation was that he unjustifiably prejudiced the administration, discipline or efficiency of the department by undertaking a school excursion without prior approval.

The second allegation was that he failed to ensure that a correct roll-call for all the pupils who went on the camp was maintained.

‘We are not fully happy about the outcome of the case but also realise that this matter has been dragging for too long, negatively affecting all who are affected. In that light, we will look for advice from the experts with a view to finding a last resolution to the matter,’ said Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi.

Full TimesLIVE report