51-year-old childcare teacher arrested over alleged abuse

Sia Ling Xin


[UPDATE on 8 July, 7:03pm: Added details of media statement from NTUC First Campus]


The 51-year-old childcare teacher who allegedly abused a three-year-old boy under her care has been dismissed by NTUC First Campus (NFC), according to a media statement released Monday evening.

In the statement, NFC said that the teacher has acknowledged, in a meeting held on Monday morning, that her actions were not appropriate and that she has accepted her dismissal.

The statement also said that two other parents have lodged police reports on the matter and have informed NFC about this during a parent information session held on the same morning.

NFC will be co-operating fully with the police on the investigations. It also plans to have more sessions to answer queries from other parents whose children attend the affected class.







Earlier on Monday, The Straits Times reported that police have confirmed the arrest of the teacher on Sunday after being caught on video. The video showed the teacher allegedly abusing a three-year-old boy under her care.

Minister for Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing said Sunday his ministry is investigating an incident at a local childcare centre, after a video on YouTube appeared to show a woman handling a boy roughly.

In a post on Facebook at 3am, Chan said, “We are aware and understand parents' concerns over a video showing an incident at a childcare centre. The safety of our children remains our paramount concern. We take this very seriously. We are investigating.”

The video shows a toddler throwing up his arms as though to greet the approaching teacher. The teacher then slightly bends down, seeming to speak to the boy.
 
In a shocking turn, she suddenly grabs the boy by his left arm and drags him to a corner. There, they appear to have a scuffle before she lifts him by his arms and drops him onto the floor twice.

The video was recorded by the school’s close circuit television, and a phone-recorded version of the footage was uploaded on YouTube by the child’s father. The child's parents had demanded to view the footage after being called down to pick up their son.

 
Watch the second part of the video here.

According to a report by The New Paper, the parents' three-year-old son suffered a fracture from the incident.
 
The report also quoted his parents as saying that they received a call from the principal on Friday afternoon. When the mother arrived, she was reportedly "devastated" to see her "son's leg in a cast".
 
"I started screaming," the 30-year old, who works in the service industry, was quoted by TNP as saying.  "When I demanded to know what happened, that teacher was there, and she acted like she didn't know what happened. How could she do that? How could she act as if it wasn't her fault?"
 
A spokesman for the school, My First Skool, the pioneer childcare arm of NTUC First Campus, at Block 192 Toa Payoh Lorong 4, said that they are co-operating with the police over the alleged incident.
 
Under the Child Care Centre's Regulations, corporal punishment is not allowed in childcare centres.