In a shocking turn of events, Makini School Junior Academy finds itself embroiled in a legal battle after the expulsion of two minors, allegedly due to the activities of their father, who happens to be the institution’s Parents Teachers Association (PTA) Chairperson. The school’s head teacher, Catherine Njuguna, Regional Managing Director Horace Mpanza, and Operations Manager Gary Wagner have been named as respondents in the case. Let’s dive into the details of this controversial issue and shed light on the importance of protecting students’ rights.
Unraveling the Expulsion
According to the minors’ mother, who is representing them in court, her children were abruptly removed from class on July 7, 2023, and handed termination letters by Ms. Njuguna. To add insult to injury, they were then ordered to wait for their parents at the pickup shade. The expulsion has raised serious concerns about the violation of the children’s right to education, as they now face the risk of missing their classes in Grades 3 and 4.
A Parent-Teacher Association’s Concerns
In a letter dated July 5, 2023, the Parents/Teachers Association raised several issues regarding the welfare of the learners at Makini School. These concerns included high turnover of teachers through dismissals, alleged aggressive behavior of the Regional Managing Director, smoking within the institution in the presence of learners, and the erection of a structure designated as a Smoking Zone within the school compound. It is within this context that the Parents/Teachers Association issued a notice calling for an Annual General Meeting on July 8, 2023, to address these matters.
Standing Up for Students’ Rights
Apollo Mboya, the lawyer representing the two expelled minors, argues that their removal from the school is not only unjust but also precipitate, hasty, malicious, and discriminatory. He emphasizes that the minors have been top students in their respective classes, with no disciplinary issues whatsoever. The sudden expulsion has not only subjected them to cruel and degrading treatment but has also caused emotional distress and anguish for both the children and their parents.
A Link to Parental Involvement
The minors’ mother, Dena Atieno, asserts that she has consistently paid their school fees, ensuring their records are up to date. She also draws a connection between their expulsion and the activities of her husband, who has been serving as the PTA Chairperson since 2019. The cancellation of the PTA Annual General Meeting, which was scheduled for the day after the children’s expulsion, adds to the complexity of the situation.
The case has now landed in the hands of Lady Justice Mugure Thande of the Milimani High Court. The judge has directed the respondents to be served and file their responses by July 17, 2023. This legal battle is not only about the two expelled minors but also serves as a reminder that students’ rights should be protected, and disciplinary actions must be fair and justified.
Upholding Students’ Well-Being
As the court proceedings unfold, it is essential to prioritize the well-being and education of the children involved. It is crucial to strike a balance between maintaining discipline within schools and ensuring that disciplinary actions are reasonable, fair, and in the best interest of the students. Every child deserves a safe and supportive learning environment, and their rights should be upheld at all times.
We eagerly await the court’s verdict in this case, hoping for a just and fair resolution that serves as a precedent for upholding students’ rights across educational institutions. Let us remember that every child’s future is at stake, and their education should be a priority in our society.