, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 24 – The Vihiga County Education Director on Wednesday launched a probe into student assault by teachers following a video expose in which four teachers were seen caning girls at Keveye Girls High School.
County Education Director Stephen Mudho told Capital FM News that a team of investigators had been dispatched to the school to establish the allegations.
“We have sent a team to do some investigations. Apparently, the records in the school do not indicate any, so the team was down to interview the students. At no point had the students come to complain,” Mudho said.
- Capital FM News on Tuesday made public the video in which four teachers were captured raining canes on girls at the school as a fifth female teacher sat at a desk watching.
- A teacher at the school recalled one incident in which girls were caned by a team of about 15 teachers with each giving every girl three stokes of the cane.
He further said the principal at the school had also not received any complaints. “We also had a session with the principal who equally said she had not received a complaint to that effect.”
However, Capital FM News on Tuesday was informed that the caning by a group of teachers usually took place under the authorisation of a senior teacher especially when the girls under performed.
Capital FM News has several names of the teachers captured including the senior official sitting who is alleged to have authorised the caning.
Mudho said from the video, one of the teachers was identifiable which will be a good lead for the investigations.
The Education Officer said the investigations will involve authenticating the video recording and also identifying the teachers caught on camera.
Earlier, the Education Ministry told Capital FM News that all those behind the incident will face the law once investigations are done since caning or any other form of physical harm on children is criminalised under the Basic Education Act 2012.
Persons who contravene the law risk being subjected to a fine of Sh100,000 and imprisonment of six months or both.
Capital FM News on Tuesday made public the video in which four teachers were captured raining canes on girls at the school as a fifth female teacher sat at a desk watching.
A teacher at the school recalled one incident in which girls were caned by a team of about 15 teachers with each giving every girl three stokes of the cane.
Those who viewed the disturbing video and read the story were dismayed by the acts of the school.
Pius Sawa wondered if after caning the girls, the school had featured anywhere among the top performing schools.
“You also tell us how the school performs in national exams in relation to the caning? If all candidates get A, then I would suggest these untrained teachers can really inject grades through the girls bottoms, otherwise take those teachers to The Hague.”
Jennifer Simwa thought the matter should have been exposed earlier to hold those responsible to account.
“Why did this teacher keep quiet for a long time? Why should the headmistress of this school do such a thing? It is bad that she is a woman and she should be a mother to these girls. I feel so sad reading this article. Had I known before, all those teachers would be in prison and being caned. It is just like human trafficking. This is absolutely a terrible abuse of the girls.”
Maria Asafi said “they simply have no respect for women… and for the women teachers with this character… they are bitter…brutal.”
Many hoped that the Ministry of Education would intervene urgently to ensure the teachers are punished for caning the girls in such a brutal manner.
A reader who said she was a former student at Keveye said extreme caning was the order there when she was a student.
“I left Keveye back in 2003 as a form one after arriving to school 20 minutes late on the opening date…Though I was in the accompany of my mother the teachers had no mercy on me, they descended on me as is they were killing a snake.”
Another comment on the Capital FM News website stated: “I studied in this school… that was normal…. Like teachers descending on you with numerous canes was the toll of the day. I still have most of those scars on my butt even today. Now thinking about it and seeing this, I don’t think caning made me more intelligent than I already was then. It actually made me fearful. It’s a brutal way of instilling discipline. We would call it mass beating then, because we would be beaten by more than five teachers at the same time. Don’t tell me that is instilling discipline…..It’s not a good practice. It should be stopped.”