Pro­test­ers up the ante on calls for Bish­ops’ HM’s sack­ing

Weekend Mirror - - CHILDREN’S CORNER -


the calls for the re­moval of the Bish­ops’ High School Head Mis­tress (HM), Winifred El­lis, in­ten­si­fies, pro­test­ers have re­vealed their in­ten­tions of pick­et­ing the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion to ap­peal to the sub­ject Min­is­ter, Ni­co­lette Henry.

The Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter ad­dress­ing the is­sue, had said “I know these things can get sen­sa­tional at times but the world in which we live mat­ters like that ought to be raised and ought to be dealt with very se­ri­ously and condignly and that is the min­istry’s in­ten­tion to deal with the mat­ter in the ap­pro­pri­ate way us­ing ex­ist­ing and ap­pro­pri­ate chan­nels that ex­ist and, so we will ac­ti­vate the process and take the nec­es­sary steps.”

“We will be in front of the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion to­mor­row to ap­peal to the Min­is­ter Henry…Now this is not a protest against Bish­ops’ High School, this is a protest against Bish­ops’ Head Mis­tress who be­rated young ladies. I don’t know if you’ve heard the tape, her tone was one of con­de­scen­sion, one of ab­so­lute dic­ta­tor­ship and author­ity and shamed these young ladies,” one of the pro­test­ers iden­ti­fied as Don Singh, told me­dia op­er­a­tives.

Ac­cord­ing to pro­test­ers on Wed­nes­day, El­lis’ ac­tions in an ef­fort to de­fend al­leged sex­ual preda­tor, Coen Jack­son who serves in the ca­pac­ity of an eco­nomics teacher at the Bishop’s High School, has proven her to be “un­fit” and as such, she should be made to re­sign.

“We’re out here to protest the ac­tions of Miss El­lis and call­ing for her im­me­di­ate re­moval. We’d like to un­der­score here she is clearly un­fit to head such a pres­ti­gious in­sti­tu­tion and more so such an in­sti­tu­tion where there is such a large amount of young ladies that need to be pro­tected,” Learie Bar­clay said.

He fur­ther ex­pressed hope that the Ed­u­ca­tion Min­istry and other rel­e­vant au­thor­i­ties would look into the mat­ter which can prove to be both psy­cho­log­i­cally and emo­tion­ally dam­ag­ing for the young stu­dents.

“These young ladies need coun­selling af­ter such an on­slaught on their rep­u­ta­tions, and on­slaught on their virtue, and on­slaught on their self-es­teem, and on­slaught of their self-con­fi­dence at the ex­pense of a gen­tle­man,” he said.

Many other pick­eters re­it­er­ated calls for stu­dents of the high school to be re­ceive coun­selling.

The pro­test­ers have main­tained that they in­tend to con­tinue protesting the mat­ter at hand un­til El­lis is re­moved from the school sys­tem.

Over the course of the lat­ter part of last week, al­le­ga­tions of Jack­son’s groom­ing and sex­ual mo­lesta­tion of sev­eral teenagers took so­cial me­dia by storm.

A f or­mal com­plaint against the teacher of over 15 years, was made to the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion over the week­end and was ad­dressed to the Min­is­ter of Ed­u­ca­tion, Ni­co­lette Henry; the Min­is­ter of Pub­lic Se­cu­rity Khem­raj Ram­jat­tan; the Min­is­ter of So­cial Pro­tec­tion, Amna Ally; the Min­is­ter of Pub­lic Health, Volda Lawrence; the Min­is­ter of Le­gal Af­fairs Basil Wil­liams; and the Min­is­ter of So­cial Co­he­sion, Dr Ge­orge Nor­ton.

Since then, Chief Ed­u­ca­tion Of­fi­cer, Mar­cel Hut­son has in­formed the me­dia that an in­ves­ti­ga­tion has been launched.

On Mon­day, the Head Teacher of the Bishop’s High School re­port­edly called a gen­eral as­sem­bly where she sought to be­rate fe­male stu­dents for not com­ing to the de­fence of the al­leged preda­tor.

In a leaked record­ing of a speech pur­ported to be that of El­lis, the Head Mis­tress was heard de­scrib­ing the teenagers as “slack” and “loose” and even de­mand­ing that they “step out of the line” if they’ve ever been “ap­proached, propo­si­tioned and in­ter­fered” with by Jack­son.

This re­sulted in the first pick­et­ing ex­er­cise for the Head teacher’s re­moval, which was con­ducted yes­ter­day (Tues­day) in front of the Bishop’s High School.

In the pres­ence of his At­tor­neys- Jerome Khan, Priyanka Sookraj and Siand Dhur­jan-Bish­ops High School for­mer Eco­nomics teacher, Coen Jack­son, broke his si­lence on the al­le­ga­tions against him which claimed that he abused his po­si­tion of trust as a teacher and groomed fe­male, and some male, stu­dents for sex­ual ac­tiv­ity.

At a press con­fer­ence on Tues­day, in the Of­fice of At­tor­ney Jerome Khan, Jack­son de­nied the al­le­ga­tions made against him.

He said that his com­plainant, “has cre­ated this car­i­ca­ture of me as a beast, as a preda­tor. There are many stu­dents that could tes­tify on my be­half. My pro­fes­sional con­duct, my abil­ity in the sub­jects that I teach, the per­for­mance record of me as a teacher is there. I have contributed to the COI on ed­u­ca­tion…I have a track record of high per­for­mance,” he said.

How­ever, Jack­son did ad­mit to dat­ing two for­mer stu­dents of the Bish­ops High School.

He ex­plained that he is cur­rently in a re­la­tion­ship with a 21-year old for­mer stu­dent and has been involved with the young woman for a num­ber of years.

Jack­son posited his be­lief that the mat­ter was only brought to light by a no­to­ri­ous char­ac­ter in so­ci­ety only af­ter he [com­plainant] be­came en­gaged in an in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ship with a for­mer stu­dent of the Bishop’s High School, with whom Jack­son had been involved with.

“In the process I have been ac­cused, pros­e­cuted and con­victed in the court of pub­lic opin­ion…I wish to deny the ac­cu­sa­tion be­ing ped­dled by [ the com­plainant] and be­lieve that he is us­ing this as a ba­sis for his self pro­mo­tion, dis­re­gard­ing what dam­age is done to many, many per­sons pro­fes­sion, rep­u­ta­tion and char­ac­ter,” he said.

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