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Feb 3, 2020

Classes Delayed at Trial Farm Gov’t School Where Student Attacked Teacher

The start of classes at Trial Farm Government School in Orange Walk District was delayed for two hours this morning as teachers met with Ministry of Education officials. The meeting was convened because a standard two teacher had been assaulted by a nine-year-old student. Carmen Avilez told News Five today that the teachers have been battling with a number of behavioural disorders from children, who resort to violence to express themselves. Well on January thirty-first, Avilez says she intervened in a fight between two students from her classroom and that’s when one of the students pulled a pencil and attacked her. She grabbed his hand to prevent that from happening and the young boy then started kicking her to the leg; three days later and the bruises she sustained are still visible. Avilez recounted what happened.


Carmen Avilez

Carmen Avilez, Standard II Teacher, Trial Farm Government School

“Two children were having a quarrel and I tried to see what was going on. The child refused to tell me what was going on when I asked him. He was just angry. He just wanted to get out his angriness. That’s when I asked him to please step out of the classroom, but when I asked him to step out, that’s when he pulled out a pencil and he was going to give me with it. So I told him no, so he could let go the pencil, but at the same time, a struggle started. And then he started kicking and just kicking up me.”


Duane Moody

“It’s the first time that you are encountering something like this?”


Carmen Avilez

“No, no, no, not the first time. But you see this one has been that way because…the children from my classroom started to cry because they were very frightened of this situation that was going on. Me, being the teacher, I was frightened also because I was saying this child cannot be doing that. You know, just calling him to explain what was going on.”


Duane Moody

“How does the institution address things like this cause I understand that is a concern right now?”


Carmen Avilez

“Well actually that situation happened on Friday afternoon, which in nothing was done immediately. I believe that something like that happens, that needs to be addressed there—at that same time. But unfortunately it wasn’t done that way. So what we did was get the other teachers support and we decided that no, that cannot continue going on in the classroom cause it is not only myself being attacked in the classroom. There are different situations and different timings that those things have been happening, but nobody wants to stand up. But I said no, we need to address it.”


News Five spoke with the District Education Manager who says that the meeting today gave the teachers an opportunity to be heard and that they are reviewing protocol to address situations like these.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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