Sex abuse at West Demerara school
By Miranda La Rose
December 13, 2000
The Teaching Service Commission (TSC) has terminated the services of the West Demerara male school teacher who was accused of sexually molesting six male students.
The decision was taken after the TSC Disciplinary Committee headed by Deputy Chairman of the TSC, Joan James, gave the students a hearing and conducted its own investigations. The Disciplinary Committee found the teacher guilty of the accusations. He was issued with a letter terminating his services last week. Meanwhile, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) returned the report, which had been submitted by the police at La Grange for them to conduct further investigations, Police Public Relations Officer Paulette Morrison told Stabroek News yesterday. No charges have been laid so far even though the report was first made to the police on October 6--more than two months ago.
The Region Three (West Demerara/Essequibo Islands) Education Department and the La Grange Police Station only took action after this newspaper contacted Chief Education Officer, Ed Caesar, on the matter some two weeks after the allegations were made public.
When contacted to comment on the issue Secretary to the Guyana Teachers Union (GTU), Shirley Hooper, told Stabroek News that the union had not been officially informed of the dismissal. However, she said that the matter was being looked at by the GTU Administrator and Field Officer, Lance Baptiste. Stabroek News was unable to make contact with Baptiste yesterday. The GTU is represented on the TSC.
The teacher, who had an acting appointment and who was on the in-service teacher training programme, being conducted by the Cyril Potter College of Education at West Demerara, has also been released from the programme. He had been sent on leave on the advice of Caesar pending action taken by the TSC.
The TSC's action followed a report submitted by the Ministry of Education at the end of October. The Ministry of Education had conducted its own investigations and recommended the dismissal of the teacher. The ministry's investigating team was headed by Deputy Chief Education Officer, Romeo McAdam.
Since the students made the accusations on October 6, four of the boys were transferred to other schools at their parents' request. The children claimed that the teacher sexually abused them over the past year and had begun to harass them at the start of this academic year. When he had finished abusing them he gave them exercise and text books. The teacher denied the allegations claiming that he was a victim of the parents and children.
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