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School in Jakarta urged to take responsibility, acknowledge operational weakness
Publication Date : 16-04-2014
The Jakarta Education Agency has urged an international school to take responsibility and acknowledge its operational weaknesses after
one of its kindergarten pupils was gang raped at the school, while the Education and Culture Ministry plans to send an investigation team to the school.
“The school needs to seriously reevaluate its current practices and its management to ensure that such an incident does never happen again,” agency head Lasro Marbun said on Tuesday. He added that the school must also apologise to the parents of the pupils for letting such an incident take place within the school.
Education and Culture Minister Mohammad Nuh said he would send a team to the school to investigate its management system. “The school has a responsibility to protect its students from such incidents,” Nuh said as quoted by tribunnews.com.
The case, involving the sexual assault of a six-year-old by three cleaning staff members at an international school in South Jakarta, has gained considerable attention
from the public and the media, some of which have published sensitive information, including the mother’s full name and identity.
The mother and the family’s lawyer, Andi M. Asrun, held a press conference on Monday and divulged a detailed account of the victim’s case.
Child psychologist Tiwin Herman suggested on Tuesday that the case should not have been exposed via a press conference, as exposing the case to the media would only harm the victim’s already fragile mental state.
“The family, school and police should have handled this case behind closed doors to protect the child and minimize the negative psychological impact that media exposure and unwanted attention can have on victims,” she said.
Tiwin added that the name of the victim and the incident details should not have been revealed to the media during the press conference held by the mother and lawyer on Monday.
“I understand the mother and the lawyer want to spread awareness of the incident, but doing so in such a way to reporters was not proper, because there were many unnecessary details that were divulged to the media, such as the child’s unintentionally graphic description of the incident,” she added.
Tiwin also said if the intention of the press conference was to criticize the slow response of the school and police, that would be more acceptable because in that case they would be voicing a complaint.
Jakarta Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Rikwanto said investigators came to the school on Tuesday to help the victim confirm and identify two more cleaning staff possibly related to the case.
He added that the police had asked the school to divulge information on the backgrounds workers at the school to identify if they were free of major diseases or mental illnesses.
Rikwanto said the three suspects, Afriska, Virgiawan and Agun Iskandar, would be charged under Article 292 of the Criminal Code and Article 82 of the Child Protection Law, and faced up to 15 years in prison each.
The victim’s mother elaborated on Monday that she and her lawyer were not considering legal action against the school until the investigation into the case had concluded.
The Jakarta Post contacted the school for comment on Monday, but at the time of publication, had not received a response.