The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has revealed fresh details concerning a schoolgirl who allegedly committed suicide after being scorned by her teacher after messing her uniform (menses).
Jackline Chepng’eno a 14-year old girl was allegedly overwhelmed by disgrace after a public shaming by her class teacher Ms Chemutai and used a leso to commit suicide. This is according to the preliminary report that the Teachers Service Commission revealed.
When Jackline hung herself on September 6, there were 77 packets of sanitary pads in the school store. According to Dr NancyMacharia, the Teachers Service Commission Chief Executive Officer, Kabiangek Primary school located in Konoin, Bomet is among other schools that received its share of free sanitary pads for term two.
Further details reveal that Jackline was among 50 girls who are eligible for free sanitary pads. Each of these girls had already received two packets for two months that is August and September. Jackeline’s mother, Beatrice Koech also affirmed that her daughter had a full packet of pads at home.
Ms Koech’s statement, however, does contradict that of Jackeline’s class teacher Ms Chemutai.
TEACHER OF ENGLISH SYNDROME
According to the deceased’s mother, her daughter had been ejected by Madam Chemutai, her teacher of English from class and ordered to go home and wash before returning to school.
Before sending her away, Ms Chemutai hurled insults at her and termed her dirty. The tender-aged school girl had expected her class teacher to empathise with her given that she was a woman. Little did she know what rude shock she will be served with.
Ms CHEMUTAI’S SAY
Ms Jenniffer Chemutai has however defended herself in the 42- page Teachers Service Commission report tabled in Parliament. Ms Chemutai denies the allegations levelled against her. She says that she did neither send the girl away nor ridicule her. Instead, she politely and humbly requested her to go home, clean herself and come back for the afternoon lessons.
This she did after realizing that the girl had soiled her dress due to menstrual flow. She took a step further to counsel and comfort the pupil showing her that whatever had happened is very normal. Besides, mistakes occur. All she needs is a bit of “freshening up.” After this, she went straight to the staffroom to get her sanitary pads.
Ms Chemutai had requested all the pupils to use a pencil when writing their compositions that fateful morning. Unfortunately, Jackline was among the few who did not have a pencil. The teacher was thus obliged to prevail upon them to go and borrow from other pupils in the lower classes.
However, Jackline hesitated for a moment and showed signs of discomfort. Madam Chemutai hence forced her to find one. When she stood and walked towards the door, the teacher was taken aback after realizing that the girl had stained her uniform.
She quickly went after her. She comforted the girl before going to get her the sanitary pads. Surprisingly, Jackline defiantly walked towards the gate and attempts to call her proved futile.
Following Jackeline’s suicide, Ms Chemutai, her class teacher, has been given a compulsory leave. Dr Nancy Macharia has confirmed. This is to give room for fair and transparent investigations.