17 July 2007

Teacher's suspension: Look at both sides first

The Star

I REFER to your report on the suspension of a teacher for allegedly punching student Lim Nien Nie.

Such a hasty move by the authorities is a great disappointment.

I find it appalling that a student used a vulgar word against a teacher, albeit in anger. And it is hard to believe that the same student would be "traumatised and afraid to go to school", as mentioned in your report.

She is, unfortunately, not an 8-year-old child, but a 13-year-old who should be held responsible for her actions.

Although I do not condone the teacher’s retaliation, I feel the student should not be allowed to go scot-free.

I agree with the National Union of the Teaching Profession and several parent-teacher associations that something should be done to show her that she has done wrong.

I urge the Education Ministry to thoroughly investigate the matter before any punishment is considered for the teacher.

If teachers are punished for warranted disciplining of way-ward students, I cannot imagine what the future holds for the schools of today.

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