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Parents go to lengths to ensure kids' safety after abuse cases

By Xu Chi (Shanghai Daily)

08:05, October 31, 2012

FOR the fifth time in one day, an old man wandered around a kindergarten, hiding behind trees from the guards and peeking through fences.

His intentions, however, weren't bad. He was trying to keep an eye on his grandson as the boy danced and played with other children in his classroom. He was trying to make sure that his grandson was not physically or mentally abused by his kindergarten teacher, Zhejiang Province-based Qianjiang Evening News reported.

Some parents in Zhejiang are starting to lose faith in their children's kindergartens and their teachers, who are charged with keeping the children safe, after a young female teacher was detained by police in Zhejiang last week for allegedly hoisting a student by his ears and abusing other children just "for fun."

Among them, some have started to patrol around the kindergarten and peek through fences several times a day to see whether their children have fallen into the hands of an abusive teacher, the newspaper said.

Some parents unable to time off from work are questioning their children and plying them with gifts in an attempt to find out every detail of their school lives, the newspaper said.

Scandals of abuse of children by teachers at preschools have made headlines in the country over the past few months.

Another kindergarten teacher in Shandong Province was reported yesterday to have been detained for allegedly pricking children with a needle in their faces, arms and buttocks.

According to China Youth Daily, a nationwide survey shows that about 40 percent of children in China have been abused in some way, and 4.4 percent have been seriously and repeatedly abused.

Most child abuse was at the hands of the children's family, especially couples in bad relationships, the report states.

Another report in 2008 by an anti-child abuse organization and Xi'an Jiaotong University showed just over 60 percent of 300 pupils in a survey had been beaten or physically punished by their parents. Among them, nearly 50 percent said they had been slightly beaten by their parents.

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