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Sarasas teachers sentenced to jail for child abuse, parents want 120 million baht in damages

Caitlin Ashworth

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PHOTO: Kapook

Parents of children allegedly abused by teachers at the Sarasas Witaed Ratchapruek school in Nonthaburi, a suburb outside Bangkok, are seeking compensation. A lawyer representing the parents made a post on Facebook saying that a group of 20 parents are seeking more than 120 million baht in damages. The parents have a meeting with the attorney general today, according to Thai media.

Reports of alleged abuse at the Sarasas private school stemmed from incidents caught on classroom surveillance camera footage showing 30 year old Ornuma Plodprong, known as “Kru Jum,” abusing kindergarten students. Videos of Kru Jum pushing a student to the floor and dragging another across the classroom were shared on social media. Other reports involving both Kru Jum and other teachers at the school followed.

The Nonthaburi Province Court found Kru Jum guilty of child abuse and assault of a minor. The court sentenced the kindergarten teacher to 7 months in jail.

Nation Thailand says another nursery teacher at the school was sentenced to 45 days in jail after she was caught of camera putting a black garbage bag on a student’s head and pulling it down to cover his entire body.

4 other teachers at the Sarasas school also got short jail sentences – around 15 to 75 days- for assaulting kindergarten students by banging their heads on the desks, pushing them to the floor and twisting their ears, according to Nation Thailand.

Thai media says there are 58 separate incidents of alleged child abuse involving 13 teachers. Some cases are still pending in court.

SOURCES: Thai Visa | Nation Thailand

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar

    Frank Sterle Jr.

    Wednesday, November 11, 2020 at 7:05 am

    “It has been said that if child abuse and neglect were to disappear today, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual would shrink to the size of a pamphlet in two generations, and the prisons would empty. Or, as Bernie Siegel, MD, puts it, quite simply, after half a century of practicing medicine, ‘I have become convinced that our number-one public health problem is our childhood’.” (Childhood Disrupted, pg.228)

    Unhindered abuse can launch a helpless child towards an adolescence and adulthood in which their brain uncontrollably releases potentially damaging levels of inflammation-promoting stress hormones and chemicals, even in non-stressful daily routines.

    It’s during their initial years of life that children have very malleable minds, like a dry sponge squeezed and released under water, thus they’re exceptionally vulnerable to whatever rearing environment in which they happened to have been placed by fate.

    A psychologically sound as well as a physically healthy future should be all children’s fundamental human right, especially considering the very troubled world into which they never asked to enter.

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

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