Friday 24 May, 2019

Teacher stabbed, students witness attack

A primary school teacher remains in stable condition at hospital after being stabbed several times in full view of students.

The victim has been identified as Norma Maharaj, of Lopinot Road, Arouca.

Police reports indicate that the 45-year-old woman was attacked by a man with whom she has an ongoing land dispute. The 26-year-old suspect came to the St Pius Boys R.C. School around 2.20 pm on Monday, pulled out an icepick and began stabbing her in view of her students.

He escaped on foot.

The wounded woman was rushed to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex.

The Education Ministry’s Health, Safety and Security Division and the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service are working together on investigations into the incident.

As part of that investigation, security protocol for entry and exit to the school compound will be assessed and adjustments made where necessary as Maharaj’s attacker entered the compound under false pretenses.

Students were offered intervention and counselling as needed from staff of the Student Support Services Division, inclusive of guidance officers and social workers who were on hand on Tuesday.

Services afforded under the Employee Assistance Programme will also form a part of the intervention to be given to the school.

The school has a population of 191 students and 11 teachers.

Education Minister Anthony Garcia has wished Maharaj a speedy recovery and has given the assurance that a thorough investigation will be conducted to ensure that this unfortunate incident is not repeated.

Garcia said teachers should not be made to feel unsafe while they carry out their duty in delivering education to our students, and no student should ever have to be a witness to such an attack.

He added that the Ministry will continue to do all that is necessary to ensure that teachers and students of all schools feel safe throughout the school day.

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