Jais powerless to act against teachers at tahfiz schools


SHAH ALAM: The Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) has no power to take disciplinary action against teachers in tahfiz schools (private Quran recitation boarding schools) who hit their students.

Its director Haris Kasim said Jais would usually get a report from the school where such an incident had taken place, but added that it is up to the school to take action against the teacher.

“We have limited powers. They (religious schools) are in the private sector while we are in the government,” he said today.

He added that if a case is reported to the police, it would be an alleged crime.

“However, if it happens to teachers appointed by Jais, such as those in Al-Quran and Fardu Ain (Kafa) schools, it would come under our authority,” he said, adding that the department would take immediate action in such a case.

He was speaking to reporters after the opening ceremony of the department’s Teacher’s Day celebration at the Melawati Stadium here.

Haris said Jais was only given the power to oversee the registration of private religious schools and the subjects taught there.

“We have no authority in terms of disciplinary action or punishment on teachers at the private schools. We only control registration and teaching,” he said.

Last week, the Darul Tahfiz Ummul Qura school in Shah Alam came under the media spotlight after the warden, who is also a teacher there, was alleged to have beaten a Form 1 student so heavily that the student’s ribs and arms were severely injured.

The 13-year-old student claimed to have been caned and punched on the ribs in the incident which took place at about 5pm on May 10.

The victim, who was in pain due to severe swelling, contacted his father and was taken to a nearby clinic for treatment before a police report was lodged the next day.

The 21-year-old warden, who is said to have begun working at the school only three weeks before, was arrested on May 16 before being released on police bail the following day.

The incident happened three weeks after the death of Mohamad Thaqif Amin Mohd Gaddafi, 11, who was allegedly assaulted by an assistant warden at a tahfiz school in Kota Tinggi, Johor.