West Ruimveldt headmistress to face disciplinary action over severe flogging

A report on the severe flogging of a pupil of the West Ruimveldt Primary School by the principal has recommended that disciplinary action be taken against her.

Minister of Education Priya Manickchand told Stabroek News that the Principal Education Officer had informed her that the report with recommendations was forwarded to the Chief Education Officer.

This newspaper understands that the teacher will be disciplined for using excessive force to discipline the pupil.

On Thursday last, the child, a Grade Three student, Stabroek News was told, was held facedown by two older students while the head teacher whipped him with a taped bamboo rod. A photo, seen by this newspaper, showed the badly bruised and swollen buttocks of the child, who was unable to sit or lie on his back afterward.

The child returned to school on Monday.

The Education Minister had explained that officials would have to investigate to see if Ministry of Education rules as regards corporal punishment were breached as her ministry views “any breaches of our policies very seriously,” she said.

The Ministry of Education’s website states that corporal punishment must only be administered by the Head Teacher, Deputy Head Teacher, or designated Senior Master/ Mistress and was restricted to be used in circumstances such as fighting, use of indecent language and gross insubordination. Further, corporal punishment must only be used in cases of continued display of unacceptable behaviour or in grave circumstances. It says too that students must not be punished in the presence of other learners.

Males should be punished in their hands or on their buttocks while females must be punished in their hands. The designated disciplinarian should use either a cane or strap no longer than 24 inches.

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