Gun crisis in schools
There seems to be new cun crisis brewing in South African schools. Image: File

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Gun crisis in SA schools

South Africa could be facing a new gun crisis in the classroms. Here’s what to know, and what can be done to keep schools safe.

Gun crisis in schools
There seems to be new cun crisis brewing in South African schools. Image: File

South African schools are facing a new problem, and it’s not the rate of matriculants cheating during their final exams, but the sight of guns in the classrooms. The gun crisis in South Africa’s schools has become a concerning problem for parents, teachers, and the aurhotiries.

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Just how bad is firearm-related incidents in South Africa’s school system?

Here’s what to know, and what can be done to keep our schools safe.

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Firearm violence could be geting worse in South African schools.

As reported by The South African website in 2022, a North-West school pupil contronted his fellow classmates with a gun he had ‘borrowed’ from his father.

The South African website also reported an incident in May 2023 when a teenager accidentally shot themselves, while handling a loaded firearm.

These aren’t isolated incidents, but part of what could be a growing problem linked to easy gun access and unsecured firearms.


In 2019, the Department of Basic Education (DBE) rejected calls for teachers to be given firearms to deal with an increase in school violence.

This comes after questions raised for teachers to arm in the face of increased school violence. According to the official government statement, this is not the way to reduce the problem of violence in schools.


Possession of an unregistered gun is illegal, and can be worth more than just a fine according to South Africa’s strict laws.

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‘Illegal’ guns aren’t registered in the person’s name, or aren’t registered at all.

The Firearms Control Act stipulates that all firearms must be registered, and locked in a certified safe which nobody else in the household can access.

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According to Gun, this law regulates who is allowed to operate and own a firearm.

If you know that someone has access to an illegal firearm, report a tip-off to the police.


School violence and firearm possession should be reported to help solve the problems.

Contact your nearest SAPS if you suspect school violence, or illegal firearms. Reports can be made anonymously.

ALSO READ: Schools in South Africa are becoming more violent

Report any suspicions of illegal firearms to the South African Police Service: yes, you could save someone’s life by taking an unregistered firearm off the streets.

Calls to SAPS can also be made through 112 or 10111.