Online fury after tutor beats child in class in China

Ann Cao

Education authorities in southwest China have warned parents not to enrol their children in a private tutoring centre after an instructor beat a pupil for failing to answer a question in class.

The education commission of Shizhu county in Chongqing said the beating was inflicted by the founder of an illegal centre called Liuliu, which the commission last year ordered to close down because it did not have a permit to operate, online news outlet reported on Thursday.

In footage posted online, the instructor beats the child repeatedly with a rod, first hitting his palm and then arms and torso, after the child cannot solve a maths question on a blackboard in front of the class.

The instructor then forces the pupil to kneel and berates him, saying: “Do you know what you are doing wrong?”

Shizhu county’s education commission did not immediately respond to queries.

Child ‘beaten to death by mother over table manners’

The video ignited fury online, with social media users denouncing corporal punishment and recounting similar experiences.

“When I was young I got beaten by the teachers just like this,” a user on China’s Twitter-like Weibo service said. “Now times are different.”

“I feel like he is not educating the child but venting his own emotions,” another said, sympathising with the child and criticising education authorities for poor oversight.

Others said it was OK to beat the child’s palm, but condemned the instructor for the rest of the beating and for forcing the child to kneel.

Corporal punishment of children is prohibited under Chinese law but it is not uncommon and in some cases has resulted in death.

On Saturday, a seven-year-old girl in eastern China’s Shandong province was beaten to death by her mother with an iron bar because she was annoyed that the daughter was eating her lunch too slowly, the Qilu Evening News reported.

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