NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 2 – Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi has assured parents that his ministry will not tolerate bullying in schools after the contents of a report on such incidents at the Alliance High School caused uproar.
Speaking in Mombasa, Matiangi who ordered investigations into bullying of Form 1 students in various secondary schools on Monday, described such actions as not only primitive but intolerable.
“We do not accept bullying and mistreatment of our children when they go to school. We want to raise up happy and confident children. Not children who feel demeaned, harassed and unduly mistreated.”
And I want to assure all parents that we are a responsible government. We take great care and we are keen about this and when an incident arises, we coalesce very quickly with all the stakeholders.”
This, Matiangi said, is exactly what happened when reports of bullying at the Alliance High School came to his ministry’s attention. “In the case of Alliance High School I want to assure all the parents that we are fine.”
“I want to thank the Board of Management of Alliance particularly, and the Old Boys Association, and the faith based organisations who are interested in that school because we have worked very well together. We have built a solid partnership that is intended to ensure that that environment is conducive to our children. And we will do whatever it takes quietly, consultatively.”
“I am eternally grateful to my colleagues at the Teachers Service Commission.”
A report put together by the Teachers Service Commission shows that Form 1 students at the school were subjected to severe beatings, forced to clean toilets and classrooms in the wee hours and spend the night in the cold on top of graves by school prefects in the full knowledge of school administrators.
This accompanied by the more mundane: being instructed to draw a car and enter it, all while sitting atop a toilet bowl or singing the national anthem in reggae tunes.
The revelations led to the retirement of school principal David Kariuki and in what has become true Kenyan fashion, a strong social media reaction ranging from incense to hilarity.
We were once told to lie on the metallic bed wiremesh & told to act like sizzling mshkaki whenever water was sprinkled on us.
— Oreo™ 🇰🇪 (@AlexVonce) March 2, 2017