PETALING JAYA: Islam should not be used to justify the violation of a student’s rights by teachers, said G25 as it weighed in on the controversy over period spot checks at schools.
The group of prominent former civil servants said teachers should find a better way to educate and encourage Muslim students to fulfil their religious obligations without any coercion.
“While the intent to get students to perform their daily prayers is good, violating their dignity won’t motivate them.
“In fact, it will only impact the children mentally and physically as well as highlight religious extremism, which goes against Islam,” it said in a statement.
G25 added that human rights must be obeyed and respected, and that the teachers’ actions did not reflect Islamic teachings on showing compassion.
FMT recently reported the accounts of Malaysian students who revealed the torment they faced in public schools, including “period spot checks”, sexual harassment and public shaming.
The students reported how some religious teachers (ustazah), doubtful if they were on their period, felt them up to check for menstrual pads.
This sparked an outcry from various quarters, with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia suggesting that teachers found guilty of conducting these checks be charged under the Child Act 2001 or Sexual Offences against Children Act 2017.
G25 called on the education ministry to take immediate action to put a stop to such practices.
“They should issue a directive and a warning against conducting period checks.
“The education ministry can no longer remain silent and allow this to happen,” G25 said, adding that students should be protected and not humiliated.