BACKGROUND : Pain in children with cerebral palsy (CP) has its sources in musculoskeletal problems that can inﬂuence learning in a school setting. Best pain management is essential for these children, but school staff may not keep up to date with the latest developments and interventions. Therefore, staff’s perceptions of beneﬁcial strategies may not comply with contemporary scientiﬁc knowledge about effective evidence-based interventions. OBJECTIVES : This study investigated how pain management intervention for children with CP in South African schools complied with international scientiﬁc knowledge about evidence-based interventions. The intention was to provide support for an update of knowledge on both individual level (i.e. professionals) and system level (i.e. decision makers). METHOD : Five focus groups were conducted with staff members at ﬁve schools for children with special educational needs in South Africa. Manifest and latent content analyses of professional statements identiﬁed interventions reported as beneﬁcial and related them to higher and lower levels of intervention evidence as reported at the time of data collection. RESULTS : Most treatment strategies concerned motor functioning that fell within the framework of physiotherapists and occupational therapists. Access to orthopaedic expertise was limited, waiting times were long and medication for spasticity treatment was not offered. CONCLUSION : A discrepancy between published evidence and clinical practice for pain management in children with CP in South African school settings was noted. Suggestions for improved early intervention to identify children’s hips at risk through surveillance programmes; and orthopaedic management are proposed to prevent deformities and unnecessary suffering in South African children with CP.