It was all over. The Midfields principal had phoned the principal at Langa High and told her everything. Anathi was officially expelled and his parents had confiscated his phone until further notice. That didn’t mean he might not do it again though, or that other guys wouldn’t try the same thing.
Which is why Song and Airtime were sitting in the computer lab with headphones and a microphone recording the first of Airtime’s podcasts interviewing the school counsellor.
“It’s like the students abusing of the cleaning staff at the University of the Orange Free State,” the school counsellor was saying. “We’re not just talking about a few bad apples, we’re talking about a culture that allows that kind of abuse. We’ve got to start at the ground up, by raising awareness, making it clear that this is unacceptable behaviour.”
“Thanks, school counsellor, Mr Ntuli,” Airtime said smoothly. “And now for a music break.” Airtime waved his hands frantically at Song. She quickly pressed play on the music player.
“This isn’t exactly what I had in mind,” Airtime said, taking off the headphones. “I saw my radio career as being more DJ Fresh and instead I’m like”
“Oprah? Dr Phil? Solly Philander? Zola-7?” Song teased. “You can be entertaining AND still tackle big important issues.”
“And I am very entertaining!”
“Which is why people are actually going to tune in. And the best thing about podcasts is that they can listen to your show on their phones.” Song glanced down at the music player. “Look out, you’re on again in five, four” she held up her fingers, counting down three, two, one.
Airtime got his headphones on again just in time. “And we’re back, mense! We’re talking online bullying and sexual harassment esgela. Let’s hear from a girl who was so badly bullied that she had to move to the Eastern Cape to get away from it.”
Song clicked a button on the computer, connecting a Skype call through the PC.
Mpho’s voice crackled through the phone line. “Hello? Thanks for having me on the show, Airtime. It’s hard for me to talk about, but I’ll try”
Image: Sam Wilson, CC-BY
WHAT DO YOU THINK: What’s the best way to handle a bully? Face up to them or keep a low profile? The Kontax gang were lucky that their teachers got involved, but what happens if the school principal or the bully’s parents aren’t interested?