13 April, 2007

Teacher caned by school principal

A teacher who was caned by the principal of her school after being mistaken for a student idling outside the classroom has complained to authorities in a bid to stop the incident from happening again

"I was ashamed because all the students in Form One saw the incident," national news agency Bernama quoted the 28-year-old teacher as saying, after she was hit on the buttocks along with several students on Wednesday morning.

The principal, a 53-year-old woman, apologised, saying she thought the teacher, dressed in loose-fitting clothes for a session of silat, the traditional Malay martial art, was a student.

But the apology failed to soothe matters, said the agency, which did not identify either woman.

"Although she did not know me because she was transferred to the school two weeks ago, there was no reason not to ask me," said the teacher, based at a school in the southern state of Johor.

Malaysian teachers' union wants the education ministry to take action. "The union has always stressed that leadership in schools is very important," union official Loke Yim Pheng said.

"If true, the act of caning a teacher has gone too far."


The incident has sparked anger among members of the national teachers union, which called for the inquiry.

State deputy education director Jamian Jaffar said those involved would be questioned, adding that any action against the principal would be taken after the investigation

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