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Phuket teacher ‘slapped four-year-old’

PHUKET: The mother of a four-year-old boy attending the Koh Kaew Pre-School Centre lodged a complaint today (November 22) with the Damrongtham Centre, alleging that one of the centre’s teachers slapped her son.


Nattha Thepbamrung

Thursday 22 November 2012, 06:50PM


The four-year-old's mother, Ratkapat Tonnam (right), files her complaint with Damrongtham Centre officials.
The four-year-old's mother, Ratkapat Tonnam (right), files her complaint with Damrongtham Centre officials.

Ratkapat Tonnam 41, said her son [unnamed], who attends the centre, which is run by Koh Kaew Tambon Administration Organisation (OrBorTor), was slapped so hard that he fell off his seat.

She said that on the the afternoon of that day, when her son went back home, she noticed “a lesion” on his face.

She said she asked him what had happened, and eventually he told her that he was sitting with his friends when the teacher came up to him and slapped him so hard that he fell off his seat. The teacher then threatened him, he said, telling him not to say a word to his parents.

Mrs Ratkapat said she rushed to report the assault to OrBorTor Koh Kaew and the police, while the boy’s grandmother went to the centre to talk to the teacher.

The teacher said she had just “patted” the boy’s cheek and the lesion was nothing more than a mosquito bite.

However, when the grandmother returned to the centre with the boy, he pointed to the place where he was sitting when slapped, and told her that he did not want to go back to the centre because he was scared of the teacher.

Mrs Ratkapat said she waited but when, after many days, she had received no response from either the OrBorTor or the police, and aware, she said, that the teacher was related to a senior official at the Pre-School Centre, she decided to complain to the Damrongtham Centre.

At the Damrongtham Centre she complained that rumours had been spreading that she was telling the tale in order to get money. She denied these rumours, saying that all she wants is an apology from the teacher and a guarantee that her son can go back to the centre and will be safe there.

Kuakiat Jitkua, President of Koh Kaew OrBorTor, denied that the OrBorTor had done nothing. He said that a committee has been set up to investigate the incident and the teacher had been suspended with effect from tomorrow (November 23) until the investigation is completed.

“She is on a short-term contract. If we find her culpable her contract will not be renewed and she will be fired immediately,” he said.

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