Yet another abuse scandal at a childcare center in China has sent shockwaves across the Chinese internet with parents accusing employees at a private Beijing kindergarten of drugging and sexually molesting their kids.
On Thursday, a group of parents protested outside of an RYB Education kindergarten in the capital’s Chaoyang District, demanding to talk to the principal and be allowed to watch surveillance video from inside of the school to find evidence of how their children were being abused.
Talking to reporters outside of the kindergarten’s gates, the parents spoke about how they had discovered mysterious needle marks on their children’s arms, thighs, and buttocks. They also said that their kids had been fed white pills filled with an unknown substance. Parents believe these needles and pills were used to punish the kids or to make them go to sleep.
Though drugs weren’t the only tools that the teachers apparently used to control the kids, aged 2-6. “Disobedient students were also forced to stand naked or were locked up in a dark room at the kindergarten,” one parent was quoted as saying.
However, the most troubling accusation comes from the mother of a 3-year-old who spoke with Tencent News. In a video that has since been taken down, the parent says that her child told her that kids at the kindergarten were given regular “health checkups” by an “uncle and grandpa doctor” in which they were made to stand naked while one of the doctors was nude as well.
Tearful reports from parents outside the RYB Education center: teachers threatened children not to tell their parents, said they had a "very long telescope" and would be able to watch them all the time, even if they were at home. https://t.co/WsmDny2SCL pic.twitter.com/TRwpnz25OM
— Manya Koetse (@manyapan) November 23, 2017
Police have confirmed that they are investigating the kindergarten and have seized surveillance tapes. Meanwhile, three of the teachers at the school have been suspended, a local education official said on Thursday.
RYB Education is one of China’s biggest early education chains. According to its website, it has 1,300 learning centers and 500 kindergartens in more than 300 cities across China. In September, the company was listed on the New York Stock Exchange and has been doing well since then.
Ryb education, center of latest beijing preschool abuse/molestation scandal, listed in the us under ticker $ryb, stock up @ 45% from recent ipo. Congrats to any shorts, their biz now in trouble
— Bill Bishop (@niubi) November 23, 2017
The scandal has once again caused anger, shock, and despair to spread across Chinese social media as tens of thousands of parents have wondered aloud if there is any kindergarten that they can really trust with their children’s safety. However, discussion about the kindergarten is being tightly controlled by Chinese censors who have deleted Weibo hashtags on the story and many comments. Meanwhile, comments are not allowed on articles about the scandal on most Chinese news sites.
This all follows a similarly explosive scandal earlier this month at a Ctrip-affiliated daycare in Shanghai where surveillance video showed kids being shoved down and force-fed wasabi by workers.