TEACHERS and kids were met by smoke coming out of the staff room windows when they arrived at Tholulwazi High School in Kameelrivier, Mpumalanga on Monday.

A mysterious fire had destroyed everything in the room.

School files, books and furniture were burnt.

Jonas Ntuli, a chairman of the school governing body, said the incident has shocked them.

“We are going to meet parents to talk about the incident. It’s our responsibility to ensure that our school is protected,” said Ntuli.

Parents who came to see what happened said they rushed to the school after seeing thick black smoke.

Percy Mahlangu (53) said: “At first I though someone was burning rubbish. But suddenly I heard people saying the school was on fire.

“The school gates were closed and we only managed to call the firefighters.”

Another parent, Petience Mohlala (36), said: “We suspect that the incident was an act of crime.”

Police spokeswoman Captain Zandile Gxawa said a case of malicious damage to property has been opened.

She said no arrests have been made and cops were investigating.

Jasper Zwane, a spokesman for the Mpumalanga Education Department, said: “We have sent a team of officials to look at the magnitude of the damage and will also give feedback about the way forward.”