At least 12 Gauteng pupils have died since the beginning of the 2020 academic year.
A Grade 11 learner at the Tharabollo Secondary School in Vereeniging apparently committed suicide by drinking poison at home on Sunday, the Gauteng Department of Education has said.
“It is alleged the pupil drank poison while alone at home. Upon being found, she was taken to Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital, where she was certified dead on arrival,” he said.
“Unfortunately, it is unknown what prompted the deceased learner to commit suicide. The police are investigating circumstances surrounding this unfortunate incident,” Mabona said.
The department announced the tragedy on Tuesday following the death of a 16-year-old Ferndale High School learner who mysteriously fell from the third floor of the facility’s building, allegedly while suffering an epileptic fit.
“We take this time to send our heartfelt condolences to the families, friends and the school communities during this time of grief. No words are enough to express our sorrow at a loss of a child. We hope that the families will find comfort in the knowledge that we too share their loss,” Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said in a statement reacting to the deaths.
Mabona said the department’s psycho-social unit had started counselling affected schools and families.
Police are in the process of investigating the circumstances surrounding both incidents.
Source: Midrand reporter