Opinion: letter to the editor

Dear editor,
I like to bring the following extremely serious case to everyone’s attention.

I received information from my child and some parents about a serious offense made by one of the teachers at the Saba Comprehensive School. Female students have been approached on a regular basis by this particular teacher who made all kinds of sexual remarks and suggestions towards these female students. (I will deliberately not go into details). This is called sexual harassment and is and will never be accepted and tolerated within the Netherlands.

As a result 4 parents came to school to file an official complaint by the director Mr. Hermans. Apparently this is not the first time that this specific teacher has been sexually harassing female students. Mr Hermans has been informed about these previous cases but neglected to take proper action which results in being as guilty as the respective teacher.

In my opinion this can never be tolerated in a school and the consequence would be immediate dismissal of the teacher and since the director neglected to investigate and take action in previous situations which probably have triggered the respective teacher to go even further this time, I strongly believe that this director should be fired immediately since he does not take the safety, protection and the rights of all students at heart.

School board what is your action in this? Will you also become guilty in this unacceptable behavior by sitting back and let the wind blow it away?

Parents, students, teachers, director or board members who experience any form of sexual harassment can contact the Educational Inspectorate at CNvertrouwensinspectie@owinsp.nl to make a formal complaint.

Saba Guru.

BMS Newsletter April - July 2016
Body, Mind & Spirit Newsletter - April-June 2015

10 comments

  1. Well, we did not sit back and reported last year more than one case of sexual remarks of a certain teacher to the management team and mr. Hermans.
    It is unbelievable that someone is still allowed to teach. But…. I don’t know why parents just let it happen.
    We left the island with our son and we are happy we don’t have to deal with it any more because nothing ever changes, apparently. Sorry to say so. Very sorry for the kids who don’t have a fair change because of this.
    Maria Jansen

  2. My God I hear this on the weekend but now to hear that the school knows of it for such a long time is just wrong. Again I says what I been saying from day 1 that none of this ever happen when Mr Hemmie running that school. I hope that former school board can sits back and be proud of all the damage that occur at our little school because of they and the spite all three vex with. The police should investigate and take the teacher out of the school as well as fire the director for not doing a dam thing as i hear he knew for over a year now about such wicked things happening. What kind of school is this that allow this to happen. Enough is enough. We needs to contact the Hague and report this as the school is not safe and they won’t say nuthin as they never do say nuthin as they know it so and so do we.

  3. Concerned mother

    If this is the same teacher that I think it is, this has been gong on for years: giving girls massages to “relax”, standing at an inappropriate distance from girls, touching, etc. These are crimes against minors. Parents need to file police complaints and not wait for a school board to decide if this man is fit to be among children. If my child was in this school being subjected to this I would spend my time at the police and prosecutor’s office.

  4. Today I wrote the following letter to Mr. Hermanns, also wrote it to several other steakholders of Education on Saba.
    Dear Mister Hermanns,

    It is more than 9 month ago that we met in your office to discuss the behavior of our son, at that time one of the students of the Saba Comprehensive School. Present during that meeting was also a member of the management team, a teacher, our son and my husband.
    No doubt about the behavior of our son, he was and is an immature teenager, at that time 14 years old. Why he behaved so “disrespectful“ though was also one of the subjects of the meeting: he stood up for his female classmates who were treated disrespectful by one teacher. Both you and the member of the management team promissed to come up with sanctions towards the teacher, the same teacher of whom is written on the Saba News website.
    I know that several teachers went to you to file complains about this teacher‘s way of talking to female students.
    Maybe today on international womans day it is time to stand up for your female students.
    Sincerely,
    Maria Jansen-Hilvering

    I am not looking for revange of any kind, I write this because good eduction is one of the childrens rights. We, the adults, have to make sure it is provided to them in order to give our children the possibility to grow into their full potential.

  5. It been a day now and still no word from anyone in that school, Come on as the letter from Maria Janson make it all very clear and it spelled out in black and white. Director Herman knew of complaints from people in the school about this teacher and did nothin. Blame whomever you likes but this boss man not doing anything was giving this teacher a pass. . Our kids been suffering long enough.
    They both need to go and the school board need to do so now or else we vote them out to as they guilty as well.
    (shortened by editor)

  6. Note Editor:
    We have removed a few comments to this article. The reason for this action is our requirement to be able to communicate with the author of the comment. To that effect we need a valid email address. The authors of the comments that were removed did not provide a valid email address.
    We want to stress that the removal of the comments was in no way related to the content of the comment.

  7. Dear Editor,

    Although many people write under different names, including myself, will not take away the seriousness of this case. Parents afraid to expose their daughter/son in public but knowing that things happened during class hours. Parents who feel to stay out of public for getting abused of indoctrinated. These are parents who write under various names, but it does not take away the seriousness of this case, a case which is just ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE anywhere.
    I am therefore happy that after the first posting by Saba Guru, the public started to speak up and even Mr. Dave Levenstone took it as a serious item on his facebook. Thank you Dave for this. As a result of all of this, the public prosecutor is coming to Saba to investigate and to get the facts on the table. That the specific teacher is suspended from school is the least that could be done. More heads will role. Watch my saying.

    Saba Guru

  8. Dear editor,

    After some time of observance, I feel that is time again to report on the developments at the Saba Comprehensive School.

    On April 13th 2016, we read that the Saba Comprehensive School is under higher supervision based on their financial reports. We all know that the former school board and director had a tight budget which resulted in a surplus. Apparently the present director has used this surplus and his yearly budget to an extreme that higher supervision is apposed on the school. Please realize that we are talking about the 2014/2015 budget. This is a performance of incapable management Mr. Director and the school board, Ms. Charles, Mr. Wilson and Mr. Mommers should be hold fully responsible for this.

    We also read in the same article that the school is “working constructively on the improvement of education. The school has been working since 2014 on the formulating of a mission and vision with the involvement of the entire teachers’ team.” This vision and mission statement was already developed before this director cam,e in place. We know this as parents because it was printed in the “parents handbook”. So why suddenly these changes? Is the director trying to put things to his own hands? Talking about developments; what has happened with the school curriculum development? I remember that consultants from Holland came in school to assist the teachers with the development of the school curriculum. We are now in 2016 and this is still not completed? Mr. Director where are your priorities? It was highlighted in the inspection report of 2014 that the school had undertaken this action. Mr. Director you have failed in this development and again the school board members are being held responsible for this.

    Saba Guru

    (Shortened by Editor)

  9. Really Saba Guru?

  10. Many things is still going on in that school with drinking alcohol on school grounds with students when they had a school dance a month ago. Where was all the teachers that suppose to be watching and stopping that from happening? Mr Hermans was also there yet it carried out right under his nose. I hears only now students suspended for this nearly a month after the dance. Why is nobody taking action before? Does this man operate alone or where is the vice principal and department leaders? It has been nothing but trouble in that school since he came about nearly two years ago and nobody can deny that. If it not one thing it is the other and Saba Guru whether you likes him or not be speaking the truths. This is not good enough and the school did not have these issues under Mr. Hemmie and nobody can deny that either.

    Note Editor:

    The school indicated that they have been aware of the bad behavior of some students. Their parents have been informed immediately about the abuse. It is not correct that the students have been suspended. The management was of the opinion that an alternative punishment would have better effects to avoid such incidents in the future.

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