26 May 1980
Fifty-three churchmen were arrested while demonstrating in central Johannesburg against the detention of a fellow clergyman who had supported the school boycotts by Coloured and Indian students. They were released on bail the following day, after being charged under the Riotous Assemblies Act and warned to appear in court on 1 July 1980. On 27 May the school boycotts spread to universities, rural areas and the homelands. Police were on high alert in Durban and Port Elizabeth as the school boycotts gained momentum. At Elsies River, near Cape Town, police opened fire on Coloured children, killing two and wounding three. The school boycottsstarted in coloured schools in the Western Cape in February 1980, before spreadingacross the country. The main cause of the boycott was the decaying of schools and student dissatisfaction with the education system.However, there was a rapid expansion of education during the 1960s and 1970s, but the momentum dropped in the 1980s. One of the outcomes of the boycott was the revival of student formations. In schools Student Representative Councils (SRC’s)were established in schools and the Congress of South African Students (COSAS) branches in the majority of participating schools were formed.
The Road to Democracy in South Africa, Volume 2, [1970 – 1980] (2006), (Unisa Press), pg 310.