Where in the world does a school punish students by sending them home unaccompanied?

Dear Editor,

According to the mother, on Tuesday her daughter left for school as per normal. However, the school later informed the woman that her daughter and a classmate were being sent home.

“I tell them send she at the market, that’s where me deh. I don’t know, [there was] some fight or something, so them send home me daughter and she friend,” she explained.

The  quote above is from a news article in Sunday’s edition of your newspaper headlined `Berbice mother demands justice after teens allegedly drugged, raped’.

Is it standard operational procedure for schools in Guyana to send home students during school hours without releasing them to a parent or authorized guardian?

According to your news account two 14-year-old female students were sent home by school officials, unaccompanied, after having contacted a parent by telephone to advise that her daughter was being sent home, apparently as a form of punishment. The two girls were allegedly drugged and raped after being made to leave school on their own.

Where in the world does a school punish students by sending them home unaccompanied? In such cases, where the punishment of  students is suspension or expulsion, the students are handed over to a parent or guardian who must appear in person and sign a document accepting the custody of the students.

The school also has an obligation to justify to parents or guardians the reason for the students being sent home.

This is ridiculous action on the part of the school. If it was not convenient for the parents to have gone to the school at that time then the students should have been held in the principal’s office until the close of the school day or the appearance of a parent or guardian.

I am sure that all Guyanese would agree with me that this was a tremendous blunder on the part of the school administration and the Ministry of Education needs to investigate this immediately with a view to ensuring that such a blunder is never repeated.

Yours faithfully,

Wesley Kirton

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