Boy Ends Up With Fractured Face From Teacher's Alleged Slapping Using Slipper
He even "begged" his mum to go home, said he was not feeling well.
Many, while not every parent, will agree that corporal punishments are necessary to discipline a child. In fact, 2019 survey by YouGov found that the majority (70%) of Singaporean parents think that physical punishment is sometimes necessary, especially when an act or behaviour warrants it such as stealing, violence and bullying. The survey, however, also found that despite this, not all parents agree on corporal punishment in schools.
So for mum Noridayu Zainuddin, it came nothing but horror when she found out that her son, whom she left in the care of the teachers and faculty of a school in Selangor, Malaysia was “slapped by a teacher” as a punishment. She related the story of her son’s attack in an interview with The Straits Times.
Boy slapped by teacher with slipper
The 40-year-old claimed that a teacher from a Malaysian religious school which her son had been attending, had slapped him on the left side of his face with a slipper to punish him. Imann’s face became swollen as a result and Noridayu was told that he had to be warded and operated on immediately.
The mum took her son to the accident and emergency department at KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital and underwent a surgical procedure a few days after, as clarified by the hospital. She was told by the doctor that Imann had a fracture on a bone between his nose and eye.
On how the fight took place, Noridayu claimed that her son’s schoolmate provoked him by saying that she, his mum, was going to die, and that he had to intensify his prayers for her.
It was said that Noridayu suffered a heart attack last year and was recently diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
Mum noticed that there was something wrong
The single mum realised that something was amiss when she met Imann on Feb 27, the day before his birthday.
“He looked very pale and was not his usual cheerful self. There was a large swelling on the left side of his face, and he was so quiet, as though he was afraid to say something,” said Noridayu. She said that her son was not feeling well and even “begged” her to go home.
It was after noticing that her son was running a fever that she approached the school principal to let her take him back to Singapore to see a doctor.
Noridayu said that the school principal, however, said that everything was normal. “He then quickly changed the topic and tried to evade my questions,” she added.
Son opens up about incident
It was only when they were at a considerable distance away from the school did Imann open up about what happened.
Noridayu said that her son had requested to speak to her through mobile after the beating—except he was denied.
While parents can request to visit their children on specific dates, students using and owning mobile phones are not allowed, according to Noridayu.
“Discipline SHOULD NOT leave lasting scars especially in the HEART”
Imann is currently in the hospital and is “slowly getting better” according to the mum.
“The doctor told me that we were lucky to arrive when we did. Any later, and there could have been damage to Imann’s eyes and brain,” Noridayu said.
Meanwhile, in a statement to the media, KKH said the patient is recovering in the hospital. However, KKH said they are unable to directly link the cause of his current clinical condition to the injury.
It is also said that the hospital bill has yet to be finalised as Imann is eligible for government subsidies. According to KKH, they are “providing all the necessary support to Imann and his family, including efforts to help them minimise the out-of-pocket expenditure.”
The mum has spoken up through a series of Facebook posts regarding this incident.
“If you don’t want kids to hurt others, don’t show them how to do it,” wrote Noridayu Zainuddin, on what her son has experienced.
It is said that the school is investigating the incident and that the teacher who had hit Imann has been sacked, reported the Malay-language Berita Harian daily in Singapore, as told by the school’s principal, Mr Abdul Hakim Afandi, 50.
Corporal punishments in Singapore schools
Here in Singapore, Caning, as a form of corporal punishment is allowed in schools under the Education (Schools) Regulation. Such punishment is always complemented with counselling and follow-up guidance on the student who had been caned.
The answer to whether or not caning as a disciplinary measure is allowed in Singapore schools is stated in Article 88 of the Education (Schools) Regulations of the Education Act.
In 2014, Ms Lim Huay Chih, who was then Ministry of Education’s director of school planning and placement division, said in a letter that the MOE “is committed to and supports schools in maintaining a high standard of discipline and ensuring a conducive learning environment, marked by respect for teachers and peers.”
She further said that “when students misbehave, teachers admonish, correct and counsel them. In instances of serious or repeated misconduct, the student may be punished. In severe cases, schools are allowed, under the Education (Schools) Regulations, to impose corporal punishment. Punishment is always complemented with counselling and follow-up guidance.”
Ms Lim noted that when it comes to disciplinary actions, schools and teachers are guided by the long-term interest of students and that the MOE and [our] schools will continue to take proactive measures by emphasising character education.