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My Teacher, the Pedophile

icky

Today, 25 years after my pedophile teacher abused my friends, he has finally been sentenced for his heinous crimes.

I was only 10 when I was first subjected to a teacher that would later be exposed as an evil pedophile. He taught me for 2 years, and I am relieved to say that I cannot recall being personally abused by him.

But my friends have been devastated by this man. One such victim, who has a daughter in my daughter’s class, has received ongoing therapy for assaults at the hand of this awful excuse of a human being.

Whilst I wasn’t old enough to know what a pedophile was and although I never liked the guy, I wasn’t aware he was abusing my friends until he fled the country in controversial circumstances. I do remember vividly him organising a party as a treat for us, purportedly due to our good behaviour. He arranged for the use of a classmates pool whilst the classmate’s parents were at work. We were so excited. Excursions tended to be of a boring, strictly educational nature. The thought of spending the morning swimming was so new and exciting for all of us.

I remember him getting in the pool with us and playing around in a jovial and almost immature fashion (very different from the type of teacher he was in the classroom). I also remember him instructing us to freely undress together and that we should embrace our naked bodies as it is natural.  To demonstrate he stripped off in front of us in a casual and carefree manner. For some reason I have never felt comfortable displaying my naked body in public and I was a bit bothered by my teacher’s open display of nudity. I remember thinking it was weird for a teacher to be acting in this way. I was one of two children who decided not to undress in front of him and opted for a private spot instead.

When his secret was exposed and he fled the country, I remember my parents reaction. They sat me down in the lounge room with concerned expressions on their faces. They asked me if this teacher had touched me in a certain way or acted towards me in an inappropriate or threatening manner. I answered then, as I do now, that I cannot recall any such treatment. Unfortunately, some of my friends were not so lucky.

The truth is, that we were raised to have total reverence for our teachers and see them as perfect. I fear that I would have let my teacher do as he wanted with me had he tried. I did not know what a pedophile was and in those days parents didn’t discuss personal space and molestation avoidance with their children.

Today my teacher received a minimum sentence of 18 months and, after time already served in custody, he is eligible for parole in just three months! Try breaking that news to his victims who have waited for justice all these years.

The threat of such instances has made it difficult to be a male primary teacher. The constant stories of male teachers who have abused their responsibilities and offended against their students is a reminder to parents to stay alert. It means that we have to be more careful than our female colleagues when it comes to interactions and must avoid being alone in the classroom with a student.

But this is a necessary safeguard. Just think of the poor victims.

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One Response to “My Teacher, the Pedophile”

  1. Guest Says:

    http://www.sgvtribune.com/technology/20111114/victim-13-pleads-in-bellflower-court-to-give-convicted-molester-what-he-deserves

    http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?id=8347625

    BELLFLOWER — A 13-year-old molestation victim pleaded with a judge Monday to give Kumon Math & Reading teacher who molested her “what he deserves.”

    “I’m not confident, I’m not comfortable socializing with anybody and it’s hard to trust people,” said the girl, whose name was withheld because she is a victim of a sex crime by her Kumon teacher.

    Her statement came at the sentencing of her attacker, Frank Chung, a 63-year-old local man who molested her and allegedly two other girls at his Norwalk Kumon Math & Reading tutoring business.

    “I just want what he deserves,” the victim calmly but quietly told Bellflower Superior Court Judge Leland Tipton moments before Chung was sentenced to eight years in prison.

    The 13-year-old victim is one of three girls who told authorities they were attacked by Chung at the Kumon Tutoring Center, and she was the first victim to come forward, said Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Detective Rudy Acevedo.

    Chung was arrested Sept. 8, and charged with lewd acts with a minor based on the allegation he molested the 13-year-old on a number of occasions at the Kumon learning center.

    When news of his arrest broke, the other two victims came forward and additional counts were added to the charge, Acevedo said.

    As part of a plea agreement reached last month, Chung pleaded no contest to a single count related to the first victim in exchange for eight years behind bars.

    Defense Attorney Rayford Fountain noted at sentencing that his client received a number of letters of support from colleagues and friends and asked the prosecution and the court to consider lowering the sentence time.

    “Many people have stood up for him,” Fountain said.

    Deputy District Attorney Nicole Vo said all the mitigating circumstances were taken into consideration when the eight-year plea deal was offered and therefore it would not be reduced.

    The prosecutor explained outside the courtroom eight years is the maximum allowed by law for the one count. She also noted Chung will have to serve the time in state prison and he must serve at least 85 percent of the time before he can be considered eligible for parole.

    The plea, she and the detective said, was effective in a number of ways.

    “I think he accepted responsibility very early in the proceedings and … we’re seeing a resolution that includes state prison time and he will have to register as a sex offender for life,” Vo said.

    Acevedo added the early resolution also spares the victims the difficulty of testifying in trial.

    “The benefit of the plea isn’t for the defendant, it’s for the victims,” he said.

    Upon his release, Chung will be placed on three years parole and the charge, considered a violent sexual offense, leaves a strike on Chung’s record, said Acevedo, who is assigned to the Special Victims Bureau.

    The defendant is the owner of the Kumon Learning Center and worked there for five years with children providing after-school Kumon Math & Reading tutoring, according to the criminal complaint.

    He worked in a similar capacity at Kumon learning centers in Northern California for the past 25 years, bringing him in contact with countless children, detectives said.

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