Second teacher on required leave at West Bay primary school

A second teacher at West Bay’s Sir John A. Cumber Primary School is currently on “required leave” following an alleged assault on a student, education officials confirmed Thursday.

Ministry of Education officials said the teacher had been put on leave in November after a complaint from a child, which is being investigated by police and the Department of Child and Family Services.

This follows the news this week that a different teacher was placed on leave after an allegation that he threw a chair in a classroom, injuring a student.

Both cases have been referred to police.

Ministry officials said they were unable to give details on either incident as investigations were ongoing.

They stressed that neither allegation had been proven at this stage and that teachers are automatically removed from the classroom when such claims are made as a precautionary measure until an investigation is concluded.

“Out of an abundance of caution you have to ensure the environment is safe,” said Christen Suckoo, chief officer in the Ministry of Education.

The Children’s Law requires officials to report all allegations to social services.

There are currently three teachers across the school system on required leave because of allegations against them.

Despite the two recent incidents, Paul Samuel, who took over as principal of Sir John. A Cumber in September, said he did not believe there was a wider problem at the school.

“Obviously these incidents are not what we want to see in our school,” he said. “That goes without saying, but if you are asking ‘am I concerned about the behaviors I see between staff and students in the school?’ generally the answer is no, he said.

Read the full story in Tuesday’s paper. — Ed.