The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST) has advised teachers to desist from making sexual innuendos or advances towards students by strictly observing ‘social distance’ between them.
In an interview in the wake of the interdiction on half pay of a Standard 8 teacher at Bazale Primary School for allegedly for showing pornographic materials to learners, Balaka district education manager (DEM) Davie Nselebo said maintaining a reasonable social distance between learners and teachers would help minimise cases of sexual abuse in schools.
He said: “We instituted an investigation through the district disciplinary management team at Bazale Primary School following complaints from learners that the teacher was showing nude pictures to pupils apart from making inappropriate comments on female students such as ‘you are very beautiful’ and ‘I will be very happy if I sleep with you’.”
Nselebo said the teachers’ code of conduct does not allow any kind of sexual relationship with learners.
MoEST spokesperson Lindiwe Chide described the Bazale Primary School case as unfortunate.
Bazale Primary School parents and teachers association (PTA) chairperson Gladys Kachingwe said the teachers’ conduct reflected a lack of responsibility and should be condemned.
Two week ago, MoEST launched a code of conduct and disciplinary procedure guidelines for teachers in the country. n