ECWR Calls on the Minister of Education to Refer the Teacher in Fayoum to the Public Prosecution
(Cairo, March 24th, 2015) ECWR expresses its deep concern and distress at the incident in which a teacher which cut the student’s hair because she is not veiled, the incident that angered the Egyptian Society and raised fears on our daughters.
A teacher in Fayoum, identified as Ali Sayed Khedr, cut a strand of hair from a fifth grade student as punishment for not wearing the veil, shoved her on the head, and struck her fingers with a pen in front of her colleagues in the class which led her classmates to laugh at her. The student became in a very bad psychological state as a result of the teacher’s act and the embarrassment in front of her classmates and the whole school.
ECWR hails the Educational Department’s decision to suspend the teacher Khedr as well as the school’s principle Mohamed Ragab and investigate the incident. Yet, ECWR calls for his dismissal and maximum penalty as this incident should be addressed as assault and possession of a white weapon and using it on a student. ECWR also call for penalizing the school’s principle for this incident as it took place under his tenure.
ECWR further calls on the Minister of Education to refer the case to the Public Prosecution for criminal investigation as the incident constitutes two crimes; the first one is assault which should not only be administrative investigation but a criminal one as well. The second one is carrying a white weapon in which the penalty can reach prison sentence with maximum security.
This crime raises concern over similar incidents taking place in Egyptian schools and escalations against female students. It also provides alarming indicator on the spread of extremist thinking in schools and the likelihood of other students adopting such behavior towards the unveiled girls and Christians.
Nehad Abol Komsan, the Chairperson of ECWR, reiterates the necessity of countering this crime through the administrative investigation and criminal prosecution, in addition to the importance of revising the regular teachers’ evaluation and safety plans for all students.