The Free State Education Department has sent condolences to the family of a 16-year-old learner who drowned at a quarantine site.
OFM News reported the 16-year-old boy from the Lereng Secondary School in Ladybrand died as a result of a drowning incident at the Sterkfontein Dam on Sunday.
OFM News has reported that the Health Department’s spokesperson, Mondli Mvambi, said the learner was part of the group that had been quarantined at the facility after there was an increase in Covid-19 positive cases at schools in Ladybrand. He confirms that whilst the incident is still under police investigation, preliminary reports indicate that two learners went swimming without supervision, where one unfortunately died.
Education’s spokesperson, Howard Ndaba, tells OFM News they have received the news with shock and have deployed psychologists to the school to assist with counselling. Meanwhile, first-quarter examinations at the school have been suspended.
“About 11 children and 3 teachers at the Lereng Secondary School in Ladybrand had tested positive for Covid-19, and the Department of Health recommended that they be quarantined. I must also indicate that last week we also lost a Deputy Principal to Covid-19, we would like to take this opportunity to convey our condolences not only to his, family but to the school community as well,” said Ndaba.
He highlights that of the group that was quarantined, some had been released and five remained, of whom two then decided to leave the building without authorisation and that is how the incident occurred.
Ndaba further appeals to communities to continue observing Covid-19 safety measures.