A teacher at the Frederick Smith Secondary School delivered a chilling prediction today at a meeting with peers that there will be more murders in schools across the island involving children “who are out for blood”.
The teacher, who witnessed last Friday’s stabbing death of 16-year-old Temario Holder at the Trents, St James school, made the bold assertion this afternoon during an emergency meeting called by the Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU) and held at the Barbados Workers’ Union Solidarity House headquarters.
In sharing a view on the rising level of violence in schools across the island, the teacher who asked to remain anonymous, told the packed room they believed the situation would get worse.
“Believe what I am telling you, there will be more murders. This situation is not finished, we think that it is finished but these children are out for blood,” the teacher said.
“…So if we do not stand up together…it will continue and then we will be back here again at another murder or God forbid a mass shooting, or one of us will be dead. It is coming if we do not stand up and reclaim our schools.
“I don’t want to say it but I didn’t think that I would have seen a child die in front of me. I never thought that I would have seen that in my career as a teacher, but it happened,” the teacher added.
In an emotional speech, the teacher said since witnessing the horrific incident they had not slept and their mental health had been adversely affected.
However, the teacher contended that despite the killing, schools were continuing “as normal”.
The teacher called on colleagues to take a stand and suggested that they boycott their respective schools until their concerns were addressed.
“This is something that cannot be tolerated. We have to understand that school is continuing as normal and people are behaving as if this child was not murdered and I think we have to call a spade a spade.
“As teachers if we do not decide today that we will no longer continue to go to places where we are afraid, not only for ourselves because as far as I am concerned it is self preservation first,” the clearly distraught teacher said.
“…Unless we decide here today that we are going to take a stand and operate in a different manner, things will not change. We have to stand up and say enough is enough because I would not want anybody else in this room to see what I saw on Friday.”
The teacher said it appeared students at secondary schools across the island had lost respect for teachers.
The teacher said educators were being forced to work in uncomfortable
“It is not only happening at Frederick Smith, it is happening all over Barbados and until we as teachers decide that we are not going to our jobs, until they decide they are going to do something with these children who have no respect for us….We have to tell the Ministry [of Education] we are standing in solidarity together and we are not going until they do something,” the teacher said.
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