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January 19, 2010

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Kids' video spells sack for teacher

AN appeal court has supported a kindergarten's decision to fire a teacher after it saw a video in which children imitated how the teacher would punish them.

Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People's Court ruled the tape was a strong evidence to prove the teacher, Li Ping, had punished the children physically and that the kindergarten was justified in firing her.

Li was employed by the kindergarten in Xuhui District in August 2007 at a monthly salary of 1,400 yuan (US$205).

On November 19, 2008, the kindergarten notified Li in writing that she would be dismissed at the end of the month because she had been beating the children.

Li applied for arbitration of the district's labor disputes arbitration committee, asking to be reinstated.

When the committee supported Li, the kindergarten took the matter to the district court, asking that the committee's decision be overturned.

But it lost the case because it failed to offer sufficient evidence of any physical punishment.

At yesterday's appeal, the court watched a video in which one child said her favorite teacher was Li while another said she beat children. A few other children imitated how Li would slap their faces and poke their heads with her finger.

The court held that this was enough to prove Li had used physical punishment and supported the sacking decision.

Her behavior was against the rules for teachers and had a negative effect on the kindergarten's reputation, the court said.


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