Prominent educator, Dr Melissa Ifill has testified to the predatory behaviour of the embattled teacher, Coen Jackson and recalled one instance where she was apprised of his actions.
Dr Ifill, the former President of the University of Guyana Senior Staff Association (UGSSA), explained in a comment on Facebook that she first learned of Jackson’s inappropriate mannerism a few years ago when a concerned mother contacted her regarding an inappropriate conversation he had with a student.
“I first found out around 2 years ago when a prospective 6th form student went to register at the school. He went into her file, copied her number and started calling and texting her – sickening gross conversations that her mother discovered then answered the phone and heard him herself one day. Mind you, this young woman wasn’t a student as yet,” Dr Ifill said under a post made by Ruel Johnson – the Cultural Policy Adviser at the Ministry of Social Cohesion, who filed the complaint against Jackson.
Dr Ifill said she advised that the matter is immediately reported to the administration of the school, however, even after the complaint was filed, no action was ever taken against the teacher.
“I then started to enquire about the teacher and learnt that even the first formers know of his conduct. It is a joke to them. Most of the children find his suggestive licking of his lips and thrusting of his pelvis in their direction gross but unfortunately, he manages to groom some,” she expounded in the comment.
The Ministry of Education is currently investigating the 39 – year –old teacher of over 15 years after Johnson filed a complaint against him to the Chief Education Officer (CEO), Marcel Hutson. In the letter of complaint, Johnson detailed numerous reports he received from present and past students of the teacher, who allegedly sexualized his lessons, had inappropriate conversations with female students and engaged in multiple sexual relationships with female students. Johnson has so far compiled a list of approximately 30 victims.
Jackson, in the presence of three lawyers, hosted a press conference Tuesday where he denied the allegations made against him and accused Johnson of having a personal vendetta against him.
“Mr Johnson has adapted an abrasive position as he is exposed as being intellectually weak,” Jackson stated.
However, Johnson in a statement released on Tuesday evening explained that, “I’m unsure how to dignify that with an answer except perhaps to say that if my charges of his predation were unfounded, he could easily have shown me to be both intellectually adequate and a liar by answering those charges on social media where he is known the be zealous in his arguments and, to his mind, ‘intellectually adequate.”
Johnson pointed out that instead, Jackson deleted his Facebook account.
Johnson maintained that he is in receipt of a number of complaints against Jackson. He revealed that a former student from the Business School recounted the teacher targeting young female students and failing them when they refused to give in to his advances. Johnson also alleged that another former student from School of the Nations wrote that he would invite students over to his house “asking for [fellatio] in order to receive the exams questions in advance or have a sexual relationship with him.”
The embattled teacher has since admitted to having intimate relationships with two former students however he denied having sexual encounters with girls while they were attending school.
The Sex Offences Act 2010 of Guyana states that “any person who is in a position of trust in an educational institution (Section 19, 1(c)) and engages in penetrative sex with a child under the age of 18 (Section 18, 1) is liable under 18, 3 (a) to “on conviction on indictment to imprisonment for life.”
Jackson has since taken a leave of absence to allow the investigation to take its course.
The Ministry of Social Protection in a statement issued Tuesday said it is actively involved in the probe. The Ministry, which is headed by Amna Ally, said it takes these complaints seriously and holds paramount the protection of the nation’s children.
See previous stories here: https://newsroom.gy/2017/11/20/teacher-under-investigation-for-allegedly-having-sex-with-students/