Seychellois teachers march in protest of attack on colleague
Teachers marched in protest at an incident in which one of their colleagues was assaulted on school grounds. (Salifa Karapetyan, Seychelles News Agency)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychellois teachers took to the streets on Wednesday to protest an incident in which one of their colleagues was assaulted on school grounds.
Teacher Kevin Monthy was beaten at Mont Fleuri Secondary School on Tuesday, allegedly by three family members of a student who was being disciplined for inappropriate behaviour.
Monthy’s injuries included a fractured skull and other wounds to the head that required stitches
The teachers on Tuesday marched from the school through the capital Victoria with banners chanting for respect and more security on school premises. They expressed their frustration with the fact that no concrete actions are being taken to curb such violent incidents in schools.
“We have had enough. This kind of behaviour is not acceptable. We are angry because we deal with issues of discipline all the time but now we have parents coming into the school and assaulting teachers,” said one teacher who wished to remain anonymous.
|Teachers marched through the capital Victoria with banners chanting for respect and more security on school premises. (Salifa Karapetyan, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY|
In a communiqué on Tuesday, the police said that an investigation has started in the incident which involves one woman and her three children.
Another teacher told SNA that this incident is sending a clear message that “teachers are not safe and we need to take a stand.”
“The situation where students lack discipline has been dragging for too long,” the teacher said and added that, “we want the Ministry for Education to act now as for too long, they have been talking for too long. Walk the talk.”
The teachers said they are on the streets as “we want to send out a clear message, we mean business, we want parents to take their responsibility and we want better working conditions, where we feel safe and secure.”
The protest ended at State House gate, where the teachers demanded to meet with Vice President Vincent Meriton.
|Teachers said, "We are angry because we deal with issues of discipline all the time but now we have parents coming into the school and assaulting teachers."(Salifa Karapetyan, Seychelles News Agency) Photo License: CC-BY|
Meriton met with around 100 teachers at the International Conference Centre on Wednesday afternoon with the presence of the education minister Joel Morgan and a representative of the Seychelles Police Chief Superintendent Francois Freminot.
Concerns raised by the teachers were on the security of the school premises. Teachers asked for risk allowances, insurance policies and police presence at these institutions to maintain order and discipline.
The Vice President reassured the teachers that their concerns and suggestions will be taken into consideration. He said that the government acknowledges that state schools face several challenges.
“For the first time in the history of our country, education not health, will get the bigger share of the 2018 budget and we hope that with these resources we will be able to address some of the challenges faced by schools,” said Meriton.
On his part, Joel Morgan expressed his solidarity for the teachers and that such instances will not be tolerated. He has reassured them that all action will be taken to deal with students with disciplinary issues including those involved in the incident.
“We have zero tolerance for such actions and behaviours of some students, and we will ensure that those involved are held accountable and punished as per the law.”
Morgan also said that a new facility for young people with behavioural problems will be built next year at Cap Ternay in the western district of Port Glaud.