Father of Bahrain student forced to kiss teacher’s foot speaks out

April 1, 2012

The father of the five-year-old student who was forced to kiss his teacher’s foot to show respect said that the humiliation went on for five months.

“We came to know about the incident by chance on March 15 when my son was talking about his teacher and said that all the other students in his class kissed her on the cheeks, but he had to kiss her foot,” the father said.

“We were shocked and when we contacted the school on Sunday, they launched a probe and confirmed my son’s foot-kissing report. The teacher has reportedly admitted her misbehaviour and was subsequently suspended for one week,” the father told a delegation of lawmakers and members of Al Asala, the Salafist society, who visited his home.

MP Abdul Halim Murad said that the school action against the teacher was “too light”.

“She should be fired and deprived from joining any other school,” he said. “We cannot trust our sons and daughters with her and we at Al Asala will use all possible means to make sure of that.”

The Islamic Menbar, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, said that the teacher should be put on trial for abusing the innocence of a student.

“This horrific incident should not be seen as an isolated case,” Mohammad Al Amadi, from the Menbar, said. “It is the result of the sectarianism plaguing our lives today and it reflects a state of mind and action that should be tackled. There should be legal action against the teacher while the education ministry should take stringent measures against the private school for allowing such blatant abuses for five months,” he said.

On Sunday, the minister summoned the school owner, principal and Arabic section head and gave them a final warning for failing to properly investigate the incident and for presenting false information to the ministry.

The education ministry had come under tremendous pressure in social networks to take stringent action against the teacher and the school for humiliating the student amid claims that her ill-treatment was sect-based.




About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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