Parents of pupils attending Portland Primary School protested in front of the school gates until the school can guarantee the safety of their children. The structural integrity of the school building has raised concerns and construction areas are continuing without safety regulations. Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency (ANA)

Concerned parents with children attending a school in Cape Town said they will not allow their children to attend a school that is a safety hazard.

Parents of pupils attending Portland Primary School in Mitchells Plain stood picketing outside the school, calling for the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) to come to ‘come to the party or get out’.

This as parents claim the school building is in a shambles.

A meeting was held with parents, the school principal and student governing body (SGB) on Wednesday evening and the majority of parents with children at the school decided the school needs to be closed down until further notice.

One parent told IOL: “This is a battle of life and death and to protect my child I will not even consider placing her in a position to even fiddle with death.

“The school is a death trap. If something happens what is the WCED going to do? Send condolences, light a candle, and then what? They need to fix this damn school and think about their colleagues and these children.”

One of the parents, Shinaz Mohamed said it was visible the school was falling apart, and said the stairs were breaking.

“The stairs is falling apart. The whole block is falling apart. There is a whole section of the school where the stairs are broken, flooring from the top, the railing and the classrooms are falling apart.

“We (parents) are only here to support out children. I am going to keep my child home because my child’s life matters because it is unsafe and unstable,” the mother said.

Addressing the parents with a loudspeaker, school principal Eleanor Braaf said mobile classrooms will be erected.

“We need to be patient with that (mobile classrooms). As soon as it comes we need to have it set up and we need time for the children and teachers to move from the classrooms to the structures.

“We asked for your continued patience and tolerance,” Braaf said.

She said the mobile classrooms will be erected on the field on the school grounds and as far away as possible from the school building.