Child abuse in all forms unacceptable: Poll

Child abuse in all forms unacceptable: Poll

Parents press for assurances their children are being cared for in a safe environment from the management of Sarasas Witaed Ratchaphruek School in Nonthaburi on Monday, following the beating of kindergarteners by their carers. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

A huge majority of people say abuse and maltreatment of children at schools is unacceptable and everyone should work together to prevent it, according to the result of a survey by the Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, or Suan Dusit Poll.

The poll was conducted online Sept 29-Oct 2 on 1,896 people thoughout the country to compile their opinions on the reported abuse and maltreatment of children in the kindergarten and primary school levels in Nonthaburi and Bangkok.

A majority of respondents, 78.90%, said they had no direct experience of “violence in classrooms” by teachers, while 21.10% said they did.

Such acts of violence included beating with a ruler, a stick and a blackboard eraser, pinching, make loud noises and keeping children in isolation.

Commenting on the reported abuse, with each respondent allowed to choose more one answer, 84.36% said the teachers had overacted; 83.41% said the teachers lacked professional ethics; 79.71% said they were saddened by the report; 74.59% said the abuse indicated negligence on the part of the schools; and, 73.64% said the Ministry of Education should urgently come up with preventive measures.

Asked to comment on teachers involved in the reported violence, 86.77% said they lacked the conscience and spirit of being teachers; 73.33% said the problem showed failures in the screening of teachers; 63.28% said the school administrators were also to blame for negligence; 49.73% blamed it on deteriorating social and economic conditions, causing teachers to be under stress; and 47.18% said the teachers might have family and personal problems.

Asked to suggest ways to solve the problem, 79.80% said school administrators should pay more attention to teachers; 77.32% said the criteria for recruiting teachers should be improved; 72.31% the behaviours of both teachers and children should be monitored; 68.46% said parents must keep a close watch on their children; and 60.76% said harsher punishment should be given to teachers who resort to violence.