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Phuket parents outraged over school beating



KATHU, PHUKET: A 12 year-old student at a Phuket school claims her math teacher gave her a severe beating with a steel ruler in front of a class full of students because she did not do her homework.

The girl’s parents have complained to police about the incident and are demanding that Baan Mai Riab School in Kathu issue the teacher, Tawee Srisamuth, with a warning.

“I’m still in pain now,” the girl told the Gazette. “He hit me around 10 times on the bottom in front of the other students, then sent me back to my desk.”

The girl had just moved to Phuket from Sukhothai and had only been at the school a week when the alleged incident took place Thursday morning.

Piyamon Sae-ong, the school’s director, said Mr Tawee had admitted to hitting the girl.

“He was angry because she wouldn’t concentrate in class and never did her homework,” she said.

After hearing about what happened, the student’s mother complained to Mr Tawee.

“I saw my daughter was in pain. Her buttocks were covered in bruises,” she said. “We went to complain to the teacher but he was very aggressive and shouted at us.”

The woman then took her daughter to make a complaint at Tung Tong Police Station, where police took her statement and referred her to Patong Hospital for an examination.

Dr Anusak Saengsom, a doctor at the hospital, confirmed the girl’s injuries were consistent with being hit hard with a steel ruler.

“We found dark violet and red bruises on her buttocks,” Dr Anusak said. “Her arm had also been hit with a straight object about 1 inch wide. It had turned red and violet too.”

Ms Piyamon said the school had informed the Phuket Provincial Administration Organization, which funds the school, about the incident.

The PPAO and the school’s committee were investigating, she said.

Tung Tong Police Superintendent Arayapan Pukbuakhao said the parents and the school were still “negotiating”.

“The parents want the school to issue the teacher with a warning, but the teacher insists he had to teach the student a lesson,” Col Arayapan said.

“The teacher is a man. Perhaps he doesn’t know how hard he should hit a female student,” he added.

— Khunakorn Terdkiatkhachorn


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