Following the recent sentencing of a school teacher surnamed Wang (王) to 4,613 years in prison for sexually assaulting multiple female students, lawmakers yesterday called for the revision of the Supplementary Education Act (補習及進修教育法) to ban individuals convicted of sex crimes from teaching at cram schools.
“While the Act for Hiring of Educational Personnel (教育人員任用條例) was amended last year to prevent individuals convicted of sexual crimes from working as school teachers, there is no equivalent rule for other education establishments, such as cram schools,” Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chiu Chih-wei (邱志偉) told a news conference. “That is why we are seeing so many cases of cram school teachers sexually assaulting students.”
Chiu pointed to the case of a cram school teacher surnamed Wang in Greater Taichung’s Shalu District (沙鹿), who was sentenced earlier this week to 4,613 years in prison, that has received extensive coverage in the media.
The ruling handed down by the Taiwan High Court’s Taichung branch said that Wang sexually assaulted 12 girls a total of 1,103 times. Wang, 46, would serve a 30-year sentence in accordance with the law, the court said.
“Studies show that the recidivism rate for individuals found guilty of sex crimes is very high,” Chiu said. “One finding is that 46 percent of those who have sexually assaulted children are likely to repeat offend.”
Such findings make it imperative that the law is revised as soon as possible, Chiu said.
Humanistic Education Foundation executive director Joanna Feng (馮喬蘭) told the same press conference that when teachers convicted of sexual offenses found themselves unable to find work at regular schools, they were likely to look for a position in a daycare center or cram school.
“The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of the Interior should work together to establish a database to keep track of the whereabouts of teachers with such criminal records,” she said. “We are not trying to deprive them of the right to work, but rather want to put measures in place that will better protect our children.”