Child forced out of school after allegedly being beaten by teacher

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The Ankerville Nursery School in Berbice

A three-year-old child has been out of school for almost two weeks and is now being forced to relocate. This is after the little girl alleged that she and her friends were beaten by her teacher, resulting in officials at the Ankerville Nursery School refusing to allow her back at the public institution.

The three-year-old has not attended school since last week Monday. The school is situated at Port Mourant, Corentyne, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne).

According to the child’s mother, the toddler was at home playing when she suddenly uttered that she does not like her teacher.

This was a bit surprising coming from a child who always had something exciting to say about school and her teacher, the mother said and when she further enquired, she was told that the teacher had reportedly hit the little girl and her friend.

While a bit disturbed, the mother said she tried to ignore the report by her daughter and took her to school the next day but the child did not want to get off the motorbike to go to her class and when her mother insisted, she started to cry. However, the mother managed to take her into the building.

Upon seeing the teacher, the girl ran out of the school crying, saying that it was the same teacher that had hit her. According to the mother, she never hits the child and so she become concerned about reported the matter to the Head Teacher at the school.

But she was told by the Head Teacher, “That particular teacher does not beat.”

According to the parent, she was told that the child’s allegations were untrue.

Not satisfied with the response she received; the mother went to the Department of Education, which is situated in New Amsterdam.

A meeting was subsequently held with the Education Officer with responsibility for nursery schools, the teacher, the Head Teacher and the parent. During that meeting, the child reportedly said that the teacher used a ruler to hit her and her friend.

Moreover, in the absence of the parent, the child reportedly told the same story.

The Education Officer made a decision to have the child placed into another class, which was done.

Child put out of school

However, the following morning when the mother went to drop off her daughter, she was greeted at the door by the Head Teacher, who allegedly told her that the teachers had a meeting and decided that they no longer want the child to attend the school and as such the mother would be given a transfer letter for her to relocate the child.

Armed with this new development, the mother revisited the Department of Education where she was told that this new claim will have to be investigated. She has been waiting until now as the three-year-old remains at home.

There have been an increasing number of reports of violence against children perpetrated by teachers reaching this publication coming out of Region Six.

Only recently one parent told this publication that a teacher attached to Friends Primary on the East Bank of Berbice hit his daughter, causing injuries to the child’s hand.

The child did not say anything about the incident when she got home until she was questioned about the marks and swelling to the forearm.

When one of the child’s parents called the Head Teacher, they were told that they had to go to the school and make a report so that the Head Teacher can make an entry in the complaints book.

Not satisfied with that response, the parent contacted a regional official who made contact with the Department of Education. A meeting was arranged between the child, Education Officer, parent, teacher and Head Teacher where the teacher initially denied hitting the child. However, after other evidence was put forward, the teacher admitted to hitting the child and reportedly promised not to repeat her action.

With an increase in violence by students on students, the Regional Education Committee has not addressed the issue to come up with recommendations.

Additionally, according to sources close to the Department, they have not implemented any programme to deal with the issue of violence against students by teachers.