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Gay school pupil takes own life after classroom mockery

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The gay school pupil was allegedly discriminated against by his teacher (Image: Pixabay) A gay Grade 9 Soweto pupil has died of suicide, reportedly after he was mocked by a teacher because of his sexuality. Eye Witness News (EWN) reports that the PJ Simelane secondary school learner was allegedly humiliated by the teacher during a speech presentation.

The pupil, who has not been identified, returned home after classes and then tragically took his own life. Gauteng Department of Education Spokesperson Steve Mabona told EWN that the department has launched an investigation into the incident. “There are allegations which we are ready to continue to investigate as a department.

We will make sure we investigate those allegations and report at a later stage on the outcome thereof,” Mabona said. In a statement, the school’s student movement, a sub-branch of the Congress of South African Students (Cosas), said it was horrified by the news. “We will support the family in getting answers and justice for their child,” commented branch secretary Simphiwe Koketso Radebe, adding that the family “are not happy with the treatment they received from the principal of the school and the district officials.” According to a 2016 report by OUT LGBT Well-being, 56% of LGBT South Africans surveyed said they’d experienced discrimination based on their sexuality or gender identity while attending school.

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