kindergarten teacher has been sentenced to 1.5 years in prison over one of the biggest scandals to hit China last year.
The mega-scandal involved the RYB Education New World Kindergarten in Beijing’s Chaoyang district where parents had claimed that teachers had been drugging and sexually abusing their children. These claims turned out to be false. However, it was discovered that one of the teachers had been pricking children with sewing needles as punishment for not going to sleep during naptime.
For pricking four kids, this teacher, named Liu Yanan, has been forbidden from working with children for five years. A Beijing court said that Liu’s behavior had “severely damaged” the physical and mental health of the youngsters put under the kindergarten’s care.
In November, another one of last year’s biggest scandals ended in the courtroom with eight individuals jailed for child abuse carried out at a Shanghai daycare operated for employees of travel giant Ctrip. As parents discovered, kids at the daycare had been punished by having wasabi smeared on their hands and mouths.
While instances of child abuse are shockingly common at daycares and kindergartens in rural China, the fact that these two scandals occurred in China’s two biggest cities and involved the children of the middle-class set off a new level of concern and mistrust among Chinese parents.