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The Northern Cape Department of Education hereby confirms that the Sutherland High School has been partially destroyed due to a fire that broke out in the early hours of this morning. At this stage, a forensic investigation is underway to determine the cause of the fire, as 7 classrooms, the administration block, staff room and the school hall were totally destroyed. Fortunately, no injuries were sustained.

This school accommodates 137 learners (20 matriculants) and most of their school based assessments documents were destroyed. A departmental task team has been appointed to assess the damage and develop a contingency plan to ensure that learner academic performance is not negatively affected when the school reopens for the fourth quarter. The Department will appoint a service provider to secure the area and remove the damaged structure from the school premises, as the safety of educators and learners are our first priority.

Currently, 4 classrooms and the Hostel are still intact and will be utilised to accommodate the learners for the remainder of the school academic year. This is the third incident of this nature that occurred in Northern Cape schools during this year. We will await the outcome of the forensic investigation by SAPS and will work speedily to normalize the situation at this school.

End.

Issued by: Geoffrey vd Merwe
Media Liaison Officer
Northern Cape Department of Education

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