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Sunday 15 July 2018
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Tobago

Chief Secretary condemns violence against teachers

Chief Secretary Kelvin Charles has condemned recent incidents of violence at the island’s schools.

At Wednesday post Executive Council media briefing held at the Administrative Complex in Calder Hall, Charles referred to two incidents where parents went into two separate schools and assaulted teachers.

“It is a growing tendency for parents to go into schools and commit acts of violence against teachers, so I wish to condemn in the strongest possible terms, the two recent attacks by parents on school personnel.

“The female parent who on video confessed to an assault on a male teacher at the Bon Accord Primary school and the most recent assault or attack by a female parent on the

principal of the Signal Hill Secondary school. These acts of violence at places of learning will not be tolerated and particularly in a society that is supposed to have respect for the process of law and order,” he said.

On Tuesday, a female parent, Lisa Williams of Bon Accord entered the Signal Hill Secondary School to speak with the principal about an issue involving her child. It is reported that after talking with Williams, the principal returned to her office but a short while later, Williams allegedly jumped over a barrier and attempted to gain entry forcefully to the principal’s office. The police was called in and Williams was arrested.

She appeared before a Scarborough Magistrate on Wednesday charged with using obscene language and disorderly conduct. She pleaded guilty to both charges. For the disorderly conduct charge, Williams was ordered to do 80 hours community service, while on the charge of obscene language, she was reprimanded and discharged.

On a March 15 incident at the Bon Accord Government Primary school where a female parent engaged in a scuffle with a male teacher, Charles said police investigations were close to completion.

“So what is happening, a very clear and unambiguous signal is being sent that if you break the law, you shall have to deal with the consequences. We cannot have that situation continuing,” he said.

Regarding a March 2 incident at the St Michael’s Anglican School in Whim where two parents were engaged in a scuffle on the school’s compound, with one gaining access through a hole in the fence, Charles said funds “have been located and it is expected that work should commence shortly on the fence.”

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