Sunday, July 7, 2013

NTUC My First Skool: Child Abuse

This is completely unacceptable and callous behavior from a child care teacher. I hope the courts jail her.

From experience, I can imagine many people would be blogging about this. I don't intend to add to it except for my own record. In particular I want remember what an early childhood educator commented on this event.

  • Indy Kahlon As an Early Childhood educator for over 10 yrs, when I watched the footage, apart from the mistreatment of the lil boy, I assume to be just 2-3 years old, I'm really shocked at the reaction of the other children seated on the floor too. The fact that they seemed unfazed by the whole commotion makes me conclude that this is not a one off incident. This teacher has def reacted n treated students this way before. And sadly it may be the same child being put away normally. N the fact that other staff did not intervene and allowed such an act to continue also goes to show that they are probably afraid of her n have also witnessed her doing such a thing many times before. All staff present at the time of incident should be interview n also the teacher. Appraisal reports of this particular teacher should be reviewed and she should be blacklisted of the education and care industry and be served a jail sentenced. As for the school, curriculum should be revised as I do not understand why the rest of the lil children were sitting idle on the floor. No sensorial play/ manipulatives provided for children to explore. Even if it was departure time, children should be well engaged and occupied till the time they leave school. That is the purpose of school. If the curriculum is revised, such active children, would definitely be occupied and not create mischief. I really wonder what the boy did. In any case, his reaction is definitely caused by the lack of guidance/ planning for lil children & preparation of the teaching staff n school. NOT the parents. This footage has definitely brought shame to our profession as educarers. I really feel upset watching it. The govt really needs to look into the growing child care industry n the people who join this field. Not any Tom, Dick or Harry is suited to be an ECE teacher. It takes alot of patience, passion and love to care and provide for our young ones and this centre did not have even one staff around to stop this. SAD. My heart goes out to the lil boy and his parents. Speedy recovery lil friend. God Bless.
    Like · Reply · 55 · 3 hours ago via mobile

I tend to agree with her. There must be a climate of fear in that place isn't it? How did the principal run the place?

Now the MSF would be investigating this thoroughly and quickly. As for NTUC, they have to ask themselves if this is peculiar to their Toa Payoh Centre or a problem in other places they run too. Was it a wayward character with a weak principal and colleagues or a deeper cultural problem with inadequate checks and balance. That teacher was stupid and careless too. Surely she knew everything was recorded and yet she did that to the 3 year old.

Always if there is an extreme imbalance of power the risk and temptation of abuse is ever present. In this instance it was a childcare but it could be anywhere. You name it. At home, any school, the military and of course offices. We had one case documented in video not that long ago. 

Update: July 8, 10:35am

Managed to catch part of the TalkBack show this morning on radio.

If Jacqueline Chung is right, judging by the way she describes how St. James is run, culture, space design and process are vital. Sure the most important aspect is recruiting the right people but we have to learn to make a success of what is available considering the dire need for more teachers in this space.

I wouldn't be surprised if NTUC review the recordings of all the CCTVs across their centres there will be other similar incidents recorded. I hope MSF would demand for all recordings for review.

I agree with callers that the troubling lack of intervention by the two other adults in the clip, the purported prevarication of the principal and teachers that the kid fell and hurt himself were more serious. Smacks of a systemic problem.

Update: July 8, 8:25pm

See the highlight. I am not surprised at all. Come on, it is reasonable to think she isn't the only one either. NTUC childcare culture and systems need fixing.

1 comment:

  1. No further news since 8th July... Have we all forgot and carried on with our lives as if nothing has happened. We cannot let this one slip. NOT ME