Better to place teacher accused of molest in admin position: MP

KUALA LUMPUR: Opposition lawmakers suggested that it is better for teachers who had molested students to be placed in an administrative position while waiting for the investigations to be completed.

Teo Nie Ching (DAP-KULAI) said by transferring the teachers to other schools only exposed them to other children.

“As a precautionary measure, isn’t it better to put the teacher in a district or state education office pending investigations?

“Why expose the other kids to unnecessary risks?” Teo said during a press conferences at the Parliament lobby here.

She added parents would feel "insulted and worried" if they knew the teachers who are under investigation are being transferred to their children's' school.

“Children are by nature vulnerable to those more powerful than them. Shouldn’t we just disallow the teacher, who was allegedly caught molesting nine students, to have any contact with other children?” she asked.

Yesterday, in a written reply to Teo, the Dewan Rakyat said a primary school teacher, who allegedly molested nine students at a school in Hulu Selangor earlier this year, had been transferred to another school.

Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid said the teacher was moved out from the Tamil school he was teaching and is being “monitored” by the district and state education officers.

Mahdzir added a total of 15 reports of teachers molesting students were made between 2010 and October this year.

He said the teachers involved had been transferred to other schools and subjected to counselling and close monitoring.

However, Teo believed that the 15 reports were only “the tip of the iceberg”.

"A total 15 reports of teachers molesting students were made between 2010 and October this year. I believe this is only the tip of the iceberg.

"How many of these teachers were charged and sentenced eventually? Did we provide counselling and proper support sessions for the victims?

"Schools should be a safe place for children. We don't want another Richard Huckle in Malaysia," Teo said, referring to the British paedophile who preyed on mainly Malaysian children who was later given 23 life sentences by the London court for 71 counts of child sex offences.