An 18-year-old pupil from a Mpumalanga private school has landed up at a mental health facility after allegedly being assaulted by the owner of the school who also allegedly cut her skirt with a knife.
The Grade 11 pupil was taken to hospital for her injuries but later taken to a mental health facility after the incident gave her nightmares as well as leaving her traumatised.
According to provincial police spokesperson Brigadier Selvy Mohlala, a case of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and malicious damage to property was being investigated following a report from the girl's mother who cannot be named to protect her child's identity.
"The complainant was allegedly assaulted by an educator [suspect] in front of other learners. He also used an okapi to cut her skirt," Mohlala said.
The alleged incident took place at Cefups Academy in Nelspruit last Wednesday.
It is alleged the private school's owner slapped and punched the teenager after questioning her about a short skirt she was wearing on the day.
According to the girl's furious mother, the incident happened at around 09:00 but she was only made aware of it hours later at about 16:00 after receiving a call from her daughter's friends.
Speaking to News24, the mother – who is from Witbank – said her daughter's peers alerted her about the incident and that she had been assaulted.
She added when she called the school to get information on what happened, it first denied the incident took place but shortly afterwards, the principal phoned and gave her the details.
The principal said he was not around when the incident took place because he was busy with matrics who were writing their exams. He said three boys were fighting and another girl was involved in the squabble. The owner of the school apparently arrived and asked what was going on. I am told that the children did respond and then he looked at my daughter and started questioning her about her short tunic.
She added as her child tried to explain, the man allegedly started slapping and beating her using his fists, saying she was disrespectful by speaking back to him.
When the girl said she was going home, the owner allegedly grabbed her by the neck and sat her on a chair before taking out a knife and cutting her skirt.
The mother said her daughter fainted after the incident.
The incident happened in full view of her classmates, she added.
The mother said because the pupils had no cellphones on them at the boarding school, they reached out to a parent who was fetching their child and asked to use his phone to call her.