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Ministry clamps down on classroom abuse

Sen David / Khmer Times Share:

The Education Ministry plans to eliminate all violence against children in schools.

The ministry and partner NGOs held a workshop on Friday to discuss and implement a child protection policy.

Nath Bunroeun, secretary of state at the ministry, said 50 percent of children in school suffered at the hands of teachers.

He said some teachers like to fight students or blame them. But even if this was slight, it was considered violence.

“Teaching students in kindergarten or the first class how to write letters is very difficult,” he said. “We need teachers to be patient to teach them without fighting or blaming them.”

He urged teachers to find ways to teach students and give easy-to-understand explanations without any abuse.

“Teachers must not make students scared or disappointed,” he said. “Those problems will make them drop out of school. Parents must also stop using violence against children at home.”

He said that children needed physical and mental safety for education.

Chan Sophea, deputy secretary of the general secretariat of the Cambodian National Council for Youth Development, said the government had implemented a child protection policy in schools in Battambang, Kampot and Prey Veng provinces.

The government would now implement the policy throughout the country, he said.

“Before making this policy a success, we need to promote teachers’ abilities and we need cooperation from parents, school officers and local authorities in how they can step in if a student is abused,” he said.

Roth Danech, 32, of Phnom Penh, said she was worried when she brought her four-year-old daughter to school.

“All parents worry about our children when they are small,” she said. “We do not know if the teacher fights her when she does not understand in the class because she is so young.”

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