We say, `Why do you beat us? Why do you not forgive us?'"127
- Elizabeth B., twelve
Caning is the only form of corporal punishment permitted by the Kenyan Ministry of Education's regulations, and visits to Kenyan schools by Human Rights Watch suggest that caning is by far the most common kind of corporal punishment. As discussed in the earlier background sections of this report, caning is strictly regulated by Kenyan law. Corporal punishment is reserved for the most serious disciplinary infractions; no more than six strokes may be given, and only by or in the presence of the headteacher; a full inquiry must have been conducted before corporal punishment is administered; a written record must be kept; and children can only be hit on the buttocks or the palm, and not in the presence of other children.128
As noted, despite the regulations permitting corporal punishment, the Ministry of Education has sent mixed messages as to whether teachers should cane at all. Although the 1972 regulations allow corporal punishment under particular circumstances, the reported Director's statement of 1996 was touted as prohibiting the practice as a matter of policy.
Nonetheless, our research indicates that caning is regularly imposed, and it is often administered in a manner inconsistent with the regulations. In most schools, virtually every classroom teacher has a cane, and uses it. In many schools, teachers routinely carry canes with them, or have them easily accessible in their classrooms; canes lean against the walls in many headteachers' offices, and adorn teachers' desks in some classrooms.
Although the regulations only permit caning in the presence of or by the headteacher, students at nearly every school visited by Human Rights Watch reported that in practice, every classroom teacher had the independent authority to cane students.129 Some teachers chose not to cane, however, and some teachers caned more than others.
Most of the headteachers we interviewed appeared to be familiar with the Education (School Discipline) Regulations on corporal punishment, and when pressed as to why caning was administered by classroom teachers independently, many simply shrugged, and told us that the regulations were impractical. As one headteacher told us, "Discipline is supposed to be done by the headmaster but he can't because there are so many students, so he delegates his authority to junior teachers who do it."130 Similarly, the Mombasa municipal education officer told us that "we have in our Education Act procedures for how a child is to be punished, but in most cases, because the procedure is a bit long, most of the heads don't follow it."131
Frequency of Caning
The reported frequency of caning varied considerably from school to school. At some schools, caning was relatively rare, and reserved for serious infractions; students might witness a caning once a week, or even as rarely as once a month. At most other schools, however, schoolchildren reported that students in their class might be caned every day, sometimes more than once per day.
· Lee F., a twelve-year-old student enrolled at an urban primary school in Coast Province, told us that caning was rampant at the primary school he had attended as a small child: "We were being punished all the time. . . . we were caned every day, by all the teachers, as a lesson, so that we would always show respect."132
· Sarah J., a twelve-year-old girl studying at an impoverished rural primary school in Central Province, also reported a very high rate of caning at her school: "If you are a bad child, you can be caned even the whole day. If you are a good child, you may be caned only twice, or thrice, or even not at all."133
· Franz P., a sixteen-year-old who was formerly a student at a Rift Valley primary school, told us, "When you do a mistake every day, you are being beaten every day."134
Reasons for Caning
Teachers caned students for a wide range of infractions, some serious, some extraordinarily minor. As reasons for punishment, students, teachers and headteachers frequently cited tardiness, making noise or talking in class, truancy or absenteeism, bullying, fighting, stealing, disobedience or rudeness, and leaving the classroom or school when the teacher is away. Less frequent grounds for punishment include selling or using drugs, smoking cigarettes,jumping on tables, not paying attention or falling asleep in class, and using profanity. A Standard Two boy told us that all the Standard One through Three students had once been caned for "spoiling the toilet."135
Failure to complete homework and not being prepared for class were other common reasons for punishment. Other behavior that was sometimes cause for punishment included "wearing an improper uniform,"136 having an "unkempt appearance"137 or being "dirty,"138 and "failure to clean the classroom in the morning."139
Missing extra "tuition classes," classes that are given after school and for which students pay extra fees, was also cited as a cause for caning. Such classes are theoretically voluntary, but students reported that they were punished for failing to enroll in the extra classes, as well as for failure to attend, once enrolled.140
At many schools, children also told us that they are caned for speaking in their native language. Kenyan public schools teach primarily in English (the official language), and at times in Kiswahili (the national language), but most Kenyans speak a local tribal language, such as Kikuyu or Kalenjin, as their first language.141
Caning, sometimes accompanied by hitting, slapping, and other forms of violence, was widely used to punish children for academic problems such as poor exam performance. Margaret M., an eleven-year-old student at an elite primary school in Coast Province, told us, "Sometimes when you answer a question wrong you are beaten . . ."142 "In the mathematics class, there's a lot of caning," said Ethel A., a fifteen-year-old pupil at a another primary school in Coast Province.143 Elizabeth B. told us "[If] you are given a test and you fall below the average, you may be beaten.144 Carol T., a fifteen-year-old enrolled in yet another primary school in Coast Province, said, "When it is time of failing the exams, every teacher of the subject canes you."145
Children are beaten whether their behavior is under their control or not.146 For example, students who work after school may not have time to prepare for the next day's classes. Their homes may not have electricity to allow them to study in the evening, and the children may lack the books and supplies necessary to complete their assignments. They and their parents may not have enough money to pay for a proper uniform or to keep a clean appearance at all times. Furthermore, exhaustion may overcome them during school hours.
We also heard scattered reports of students caned for not being able to afford school fees. Andrew K., a seventeen-year old in Nyanza Province, dropped out of school because he could no longer afford school fees; he told us that in his primary school, children who couldn't pay were caned:
If you couldn't pay fees, you would be caned six times, and sent home to bring the money from your parents. You would go home, and there is no money, and then you would go back to school because you still want to learn, and you would be caned again. I kept going back to school and home again. The headmaster would come to class with a list of students who had not paid, and would cane them all, then move on to the next class with the list. You would lie down on the floor, and he would hit you. Hit you on the back, between the shoulders and the buttocks. It would shock the kids... they were fearing the cane.147
Andrew K. was the only student we interviewed who said he personally experienced caning as a result of his parents not being able to pay his school fees.
The perception shared by most children was that caning was used almost indiscriminately:
· Elizabeth B. from Coast Province said: "Some of the teachers are beating us very hard here, and they are beating even the very small girls-it's very cruel. You can be beaten for anything: if you are feeling sleepy in class, or you are late, or dirty, or you have not done your homework, or you are given a test and you fall below the average, you may be beaten."148
· Richard O., a seventeen-year-old attending an urban secondary school in Central Province, recalled his primary school days: "At primary school, it is very, very bad. It was really bad. The punishment is the cane and nothing else. Every small thing and you are caned and nothing else."149
Number of Strokes
The severity of punishments also varied greatly, and many children viewed the number of strokes as somewhat arbitrary: while most children agreed that the more serious the infraction, the higher the number of strokes, the most important factor seemed to be the "harshness" of the particular teacher. A gentle teacher might cane rarely, and give only a few light strokes even for relatively serious offenses, while a harsh teacher might routinely administer six or more heavy strokes.
A particularly harsh teacher, some children told us, might even hit harder or administer more strokes to a child who cried when hit. In a way, expressing pain is viewed as an act of further disobedience, an expression of a child's unwillingness to silently accept punishment. Susan S., fifteen, a student at a poor rural primary school in Central Province, told us, "If you are beaten very hard, sometimes you cry, and then they are angry and beat you harderstill."150 James E., a boy at a suburban Central Province primary school, reported, "There are some that when you cry, they hit you more. There are some that try to make you hurt."151 Phillip T., his classmate, agreed: "You may cry. They hit you again if you move or if you cry. 152 Mary F., a ten-year-old attending an elite primary school in Coast Province, told us, "sometimes if the teacher has punished you, you may start crying, and she adds more strokes."153
Students at several schools told us that when they are punished for poor exam results and that the number of strokes they are given depends on their performance on the exam. When the students receive their scores, Janet K., a twelve-year-old student at an elite primary school in Coast Province, told us, "you are told to subtract that number from one hundred," and then divide by another number to determine the number of strokes, although "ten is the most."154 At a rural primary school in Coast Province, fifteen-year-old Rachel D. said that they were caned regularly after taking practice Kenya Certificate of Primary Education exams periodically; they were given six strokes for scores below 300, four strokes for scoring 300-350, two strokes for scoring 350-450, and escaped punishment if they scored above 450.155
At times, students are given twenty or more strokes with the cane. Fifteen-year-old Deborah D. told us, "One day students were sweeping outside and the duty teacher came and found one of them had no broom." When the student resisted punishment, other teachers joined the teacher on duty, and all caned the broomless child at once, "some eight, some seven, some ten strokes."156 Similarly, students at times receive double punishments: in some cases, children reported being caned by both their teacher and the headteacher.157 "If it is very serious, you may be caned first by the teacher, then sent to the head to be caned another time," a twelve-year-old schoolgirl at an impoverished rural primary school in Central Province told us.158
While we were able to see no particular patterns in the incidents of severe caning, many of the cases of high numbers of strokes seemed to occur during incidents of collective punishment, when several students were being punished at once by several teachers. Collective punishments are common, according to the children we interviewed: "For example, if there is noise in the class, then sometimes the whole class is caned-so you will be caned even if you have done nothing wrong," twelve-year-old Lee F. from Coast Province explained.159
· Elizabeth B. told us, "The worst time I was punished was when some girls wrote bad things in the latrine. I don't even know who. Then the teachers visited the latrines and saw the writings. Then, all the girls from Standards Six to Eight were called outside the staff room, and we were all seriously punished. All the teachers at once werebeating us. I think I received about twenty strokes, and it was very painful, for they were beating us not only on the hands, but also on the toes, the legs, the head. . ."160
· Emily T., sixteen, a student at a primary school in a semi-urban area of Coast Province, explained that "the punishment for noise making is that you are taken to the staff room and all the teachers have canes, and they all give you strokes at the same time,"161 This was corroborated by three of her classmates,162 one of whom added that in such cases children might be caned by "four or five teachers, each giving you three to five strokes."163
Students from several other schools also reported that multiple teachers might cane them at once.
For the most part, children are caned in front of their classmates, although in a few cases children reported that they were typically taken to the staff room to be caned.164 At some schools, students were caned in front of the entire school, during school assemblies or parades.165 As Janet K. from Coast Province told us, "if you did a very serious mistake. . . you will be beaten by the headmistress before the whole school."166 An eighteen-year-old student at an urban secondary school in Central Province said to us, "In Kenya, [corporal punishment] has . . . become conventional law or something. You can find students hit ten, twenty, or thirty times, in the classroom, which means you are very humiliated . . . . The humiliation is the worst. In some cases, they use iodine on the cane so that you do not get an infection if the cane breaks the skin."167
Size of the Cane
The size of the cane used in corporal punishment varies significantly.168 In most cases, children indicated that the canes used were about two to three feet long, and about one half to three quarters of an inch thick. Other descriptions of canes included "a cane made of wood that doesn't break, sometimes a guava tree,"169 "a blackboard ruler" used "until it gets broken,"170 and a "bamboo stick" that "may have little thorns in it."171 Three students at a secondary school indicated that the cane used there was quite large, describing it as "a broomstick, maybe one inch thick,"172 "about 1.5 meters long,"173 and "four feet long, made of wood."174
Parts of the Body Hit
The regulations governing corporal punishment also state that children may only be hit on the buttocks, if a cane is used, or on the palm, if a strap is used. In practice, we found that boys were mostly caned on the backside, and girls were mostly caned on the palm or back of the hand. Nonetheless, several teachers and headteachers openly acknowledged that they hit children on parts of the body, as well, and children at schools throughout Kenya reported that at times they are hit on the back, the calf muscles, the soles of the feet, the toes, the shoulders, the front and back of the thighs, the knees, and even on the face and head.
Amos P., fifteen, a pupil at an urban primary school in Coast Province, told us that "they cane just anywhere."175 Sixteen-year-old Travis B., who attends a rural primary school in Coast Province, told us that students are hit "on the body, every part."176 Janet K. reported that "sometimes we are given strokes on the hand, sometimes on the buttocks, or on the back, or on the legs... and also the knees."177 Twelve-year-old Lee F. from Coast Province said "if they are very angry they will beat you just anywhere, on the head and on the back"178
Other Forms of Corporal Punishment
Although caning is the only form of corporal punishment in Kenya permitted under the Education (School Discipline) Regulations, many children told Human Rights Watch that at times they are slapped, pinched, hit, whipped or kicked by their teachers. Teachers and headteachers also acknowledged that such "unofficial" punishments are used at times.
After caning, slapping was the most commonly reported form of school corporal punishment. Children recalled being slapped on the face, the head, the back, and on "every part" of the body.179 Slapping was considered by some to be less severe than caning: "sometimes also they slap in the face, but that is a less serious punishment."180
Many students also reported that teachers pinched them,181 and one at primary school in Rift Valley Province explained that they were pinched on the cheeks.182 Fifteen-year-old Carol T. from Coast Province reported being elbowed in the back by her teachers,183 and in several cases children said that the teachers "boxed" and "hit" in addition to slapping.184 One teacher told us that she sometimes punished students by "snatching," which she described as grabbing the students.185
Whipping is also not infrequent as a form of corporal punishment. A deputy headteacher at Mirera Primary school in Naivasha told us that "even this morning I had to punish eighty students" by whipping them.186 He showed a Human Rights Watch researcher the whip, which was made of heavy rubber, cut from a car tire. The whip wasabout three feet long and three inches wide, and he demonstrated its use by slamming it down on his desk. At an urban secondary school in Central Province, a whip adorned the headteacher's desk, and several students told us that the headteacher both whipped and caned to punish students.187 In Nyanza Province, Harold D., eighteen, reported being whipped with a garden hose,188 and in Coast Province, Maryanne P., fifteen, told us that she had been whipped with a length of rope.189
Failure to Conduct Inquiries and Keep Records
The Ministry of Education's regulations stipulate that caning can only be administered after a full inquiry, but a common complaint from children was that teachers caned them without even waiting for an explanation of the perceived misbehavior. Similarly, the Ministry of Education's regulations require each school to keep a record of every incident of corporal punishment. We were able to review the punishment log book at only a few schools, and found that a few punishments were actually recorded. For the most part, interviews with children made it clear that caning was far more frequent than the log books showed.
At most schools we visited, however, we were unable to inspect the "punishment book"; the book was "unavailable" at the time of our visit. At Kayoi Primary School (Keiyo) and at Kilalani Primary School (Machako), the deputy headteachers told us that the book was locked away and that only the absent headteacher had the key;190 at Golini Primary School (Kwale), the headteacher told us that the book was "locked in the cupboard" and that the lock was broken (in an office with no apparent locking cabinets);191 and at Pandipieri Primary (Kisumu) and Kangundo District Education Board School (Machakos), the headteachers told us that their absent deputies or disciplinarians had the book.192
At other schools, the headteachers openly acknowledged that not every incident of caning is recorded.193 "We delegate the authority to teachers to do it. They don't report back to me, and it's not recorded," admitted one rural primary school headteacher.194 One student at a rural primary school in Coast Province told us that school does not keep a punishment log at all,195 and the deputy headteacher at another school acknowledged the same: "We don't write it down. We don't keep a register."196 At least one headteacher seemed to think that recording was only necessary for "serious" cases of corporal punishment; in that case, he told us, "then we shall have a record."197
Resulting Physical Injuries, Including Deaths
Much corporal punishment in Kenyan schools is inflicted by well-meaning teachers who were taught no other means of maintaining classroom discipline and promoting academic performance. For the most part, there is little reason to doubt that most teachers administer corporal punishment in a manner that seems to them to be fair, reasonable, and pedagogically valuable. Nonetheless, when the use of corporal punishment becomes an acceptable and regular part of the teaching process, severe injuries and abuses inevitably occur.
First, accidents happen: a stroke of the cane aimed at a child's backside may inadvertently strike another part of the body-the head or the kidneys, for instance-causing severe injuries. Similarly, some children have medical conditions that render them vulnerable to serious injuries from strokes of the cane that would not seriously injure another child: a child with a heart or lung condition, for instance, may faint or even die out of a combination of pain and fear.
Second, when corporal punishment is permitted, there is virtually no way to prevent some teachers from inflicting corporal punishment in a fashion that is sadistic, cruel, and intended to cause grievous injury. At virtually every one of the twenty Kenyan schools visited by Human Rights Watch, it was clear from interviews with children that some teachers, at least, inflicted corporal punishment in a disproportionate, arbitrary, and cruel manner.
It is Human Rights Watch's position that all school corporal punishment constitutes cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment, notwithstanding the benign motives alleged by some of those who inflict it. In some cases, corporal punishment may even rise to the level of torture. School corporal punishment involves violence inflicted by public officials or persons performing a public function against people under their control, and the violence is deliberately calculated to cause physical pain and humiliation. Since children are physically and psychologically undeveloped, relative to adults, they are especially vulnerable to the negative effects of corporal punishment.
Perhaps the most common corporal punishment-related injuries are injuries to the fingers, thumbs, and hands. Janet K. explained that "sometimes you might be beaten and your hand swells . . . you might see a red mark appearing on your hand."198 Lee F. explained, "Often children receive injuries that bleed, because the bamboo stick they use may have little thorns in it, and they cut you."199 Ronald B., a twelve-year-old at an impoverished rural primary school in Central Province, reported that "I myself have never had a broken bone from beatings, but bleeding-that is something that sometimes happens if you are beaten very hard."200
At times, sprains and broken fingers result from canings by teachers with poor aim; at other times, they occur when fearful children hold out their hands to ward off blows. "Sometimes when the student tries to [avoid] the cane, it hits him in the fingers," explained Owen F.201 Fifteen-year-old Susan S. told us, "Sometimes small bones break in the hand, if the stick is hitting you the wrong way."202
Julia R., twelve, a pupil at an urban primary school in Coast Province, told us that teachers are unsympathetic to such injuries, saying that "If a child gets hurt, normally it is not easy to talk to the teacher about this, because if you tell them, they say it is your fault. For an example, if you stretch out your hand to protect yourself and then you break a small bone, they will say it is your own fault."203 Alan A., a fifteen-year-old attending an urban primary school inCoast Province, told us that a classmate of his had broken his hand after jumping back to avoid the cane, and falling down with his hand behind him.204
Fainting is also a frequent consequence of corporal punishment:
· Julia R. told us, "Our teacher would give ten strokes, for almost any misbehaviours. He was very harsh. In class six we had one girl who had a sickness. I don't know what it was. When she was beaten she would just faint."205
· Ryan G., an eleven-year-old enrolled at an urban primary school in Coast Province, told us that "boys often faint after eleven or twelve strokes," and that he himself had "fainted two times from being beaten."206
· Jennifer D., fifteen, a student at a primary school in a semi-urban area of Coast Province, reported, "I saw a boy here caned until he fainted. I don't know his name. I was walking by, on my way to the toilets, and I walked by the open door of his classroom; it was a Standard Five classroom. I saw him being caned, and he fell down in a faint. That was just this year."207
· Fourteen-year-old Anita W., also a pupil at a primary school in a semi-urban area of Coast Province, recalled an incident where a classmate had been "beaten on the hand" for lateness, but then fell unconscious; "when she fell unconscious the teachers called her parents, and the parents came and gave her first aid."208
Children also suffer a range of other moderate to severe injuries as a result of corporal punishment. Fifteen-year-old Alan A. from Coast Province told us of a classmate who was caned by many teachers at once, and had to be taken to the hospital for injuries to his leg; in the two months since he enrolled at an urban primary school in Coast Province, two students had been sent to the hospital from caning.209 Eleven-year-old Ryan G. from Coast Province recalled that "one boy in Standard Eight got a broken arm last term from being caned... he had it in a sling for some time."210 Elizabeth B. described the following incident:
In one of my classes one girl was slapped so hard that two of her teeth came out. The teacher was very angry because some of the girls failed a test, and so the teacher gave these girls a choice: three slaps from his hand or ten strokes with the cane. This girl chose the three slaps and so he hit her on her face three times, very hard, and her mouth was bloody and her two teeth came out. And the other girls cried out to the teacher, saying, "Look, you have taken out her teeth!," and then the teacher was so angry that he caned everyone again.211
Particular Children's Stories
Alex J.'s Story
Alex, a seventeen-year-old from Nyanza Province, showed us the scars on his back, and told us the following story:
I was badly beaten about two weeks ago. We did an assessment test in all subjects. They wanted us to reach a mean score of about 500 and above, but many of us didn't perform well. So they decided to cane the whole Standard Eight-four strokes each, lying down on the ground. The headmaster was caning everyone, but he got tired, and so [another teacher] took over the caning. [He] caned me four times as I lay on my stomach.
The headmaster came and grabbed me and made me stand up and started hitting me back and forth from side to side on my head. At the same time he was hitting me he was telling the students something, but I couldn't understand or hear what he was saying as I was in pain. Then he told me to lie down again. As I lay down, he slapped me and I fell down.
He started caning me on my back. I told him to let me go and this made him angry and he started boxing me. I was crying and in pain. Then he stepped on my chest and some of the teachers started to leave. People were afraid. I don't know why he selected me to beat so badly. I think it was because I had missed going to school some days before to watch games at the stadium.
I returned [home]. My back was bleeding, and I was sick. The next day I went to the doctor. The doctor told me it was a very thorough beating, and that if I had come the day earlier, when I was still bleeding, she would have taken pictures.
I stayed home from school for three days. During that time I missed another test. In school I heard they informed the pupils that I had missed the test because I had been caned. I was almost to be punished again for missing the test, but [an adult friend] came with me to school and I was excused. Since then, I've not had problems with the teachers. But they are frightening me because they say if you fail they'll cane me worse. The headmaster told me that if I miss or fail a test again, I'll be beaten even worse than that time. All the students were told they would be beaten if they failed a test again.212
Peter Kimemia Wanganga's Story
On September 16, 1998, Peter Kimemia Wanganga, a thirteen-year-old Standard Seven student at a boarding school in Eldama Ravine, accidentally broke a school window while playing with a ball. He was first instructed to go home and get KSh200 from his mother to replace the window. He did so, and when he returned he was sent to the office of Headteacher Amos K. Changwony, according to Peter Kimemia Wanganga's lawyer.
The headteacher allegedly told him to lie down on the ground and remove his shorts. Peter Kimemia Wanganga was reportedly caned more than 20 times on the buttocks, at which point he lost consciousness. After he recovered consciousness and was allowed to get up, he began to put his shorts back on; the headteacher allegedly continued to hit him as he did so. He was not allowed to go home after the caning.
As a reported result of the caning, Peter Kimemia Wanganga's buttocks were swollen, and he had a severe headache, accompanied by chest pain; his rights hand was also swollen and painful. His mother took him to the hospital, where a doctor found that his right thumb had been dislocated when he had put out his hand to block the blows. Although criminal charges have been filed against the headteacher, no other disciplinary action has been taken, and the case remains unresolved, according to the family's lawyer.213
Kipkosgei Kimutai's Story
On September 17, 1998, Kipkosgei Kimutai, a student at Kayoi Primary School in the Rift Valley Province, died after allegedly being caned by one of his teachers, Grace Jepkemoi Kipsitet,214 who had a reputation among students for caning children using anything within reach.215
According to classmates of Kipkosgei Kimutai interviewed by Human Rights Watch, many children were beaten that day. Although his classmates did not witness the beating, they said they saw Kipkosgei Kimutai in the group of children led into an office to be beaten, and later in the day, they reportedly saw his father carrying his son's inert body away from their house, which was very near the school.216
After the death, according to the local district education officer, the teacher, Grace Jepkemoi Kipsitet, "went on maternity leave, and then was transferred to another school in Karmarinyi Division, where she has been teaching since she returned from maternity leave."217 She was subsequently charged with murder on April 21, 1999, but the charges were withdrawn by the prosecutor on May 10, 1999, pending an inquest. Resident Magistrate M.J. Kiptoo approved the withdrawal and discharged the case pending the inquest.218 No further information was available to Human Rights Watch on the status of the inquest. According to the district education officer, Kipkosgei Kimutai was malnourished to begin with, and the post mortem indicated that the cause of death was that "his intestines had encoiled abnormally... [so] we're not taking any disciplinary action against the teacher."219
Josephine Wambui Mwangi's Story
On July 17, 1996, Josephine Wambui Mwangi, a student at Githunguchu Primary School in Kiambu, reportedly was caned by three teachers, Joseph Njenga Mwanii, Samuel Gichina Gitibi, and Tabitha Wangari Mbugua. She was allegedly hit at least eleven times before falling down, unconscious, at which point she was taken to the hospital, where she died.220
The teachers involved were prosecuted for murder. The case was handled by Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Muchemi, who told Human Rights Watch that the post mortem results showed that Wambui Mwangi had "something with the heart." This "something" was deemed to have been "the cause of death... [so] we found that the evidence was not sufficient to convict the teachers." Despite the fact that her death presumably occurred when the beating aggravated her preexisting heart condition, the case was still dismissed.221
Michael Munyaga's Story
On October 25, 1996, Michael Munyaga, a twelve-year-old boy at Munyu Primary School in Naivasha, reportedly left school early for lunch, along with several other children.222 The children had not received permissionto leave early. When they returned to school after lunch, all of the children were allegedly caned repeatedly on the hands by two teachers, Frecia Wangui Mutua and Kamau Karanja.
Michael Munyaga's hands reportedly swelled and caused him severe pain, and he could not use his hands. His parents took him to the hospital, where doctors found that in addition to severe bruising, he had suffered serious nerve damage to one of his thumbs.
As of May 1999, over two years after the original incident, Michael Munyaga allegedly still requires medical treatment for his injuries, and his family has moved to Nairobi to receive treatment. Although the teachers involved were charged and convicted of assault, they were only fined Ksh2000 each (the equivalent of U.S.$35), according to the family's lawyer.223 Both teachers are still teaching at Munyu Primary School.224
Government Response to Injuries or Complaints Arising from Corporal Punishment
Government responses to serious incidents of corporal punishment have been wholly inadequate to combat abuses. The Ministry of Education is doing little to educate its teachers on appropriate methods of discipline and the harms of corporal punishment. When children are injured by corporal punishment, schools-or individual teachers-at times provide or pay for medical assistance for the child, but teachers who injure children are rarely disciplined, let alone dismissed or prosecuted. Some parents press charges against abusers, and there have been a number of well-publicized prosecutions; in almost every case known to Human Rights Watch, however, teachers have either been acquitted, the cases have been dismissed, or teachers have been convicted but handed extremely light penalties-generally just a small fine. Most continue to have children in their care, teaching in the same schools in which they have previously abused children. In practice, children are left with little remedy against corporal punishment, and in many cases, children respond to severe punishments and injuries by transferring from abusive schools, if they are able to, or by dropping out of school altogether.
Headteachers and teacher who cane children may be criminally prosecuted for assault or murder. Susan Wairimu Kiarie, a Nairobi attorney working with the nongovernmental organization ANPPCAN-Kenya,225 represents several children who have been the victims of severe corporal punishment.226 According to Kiarie, there are several barriers to effective criminal prosecution for corporal punishment. If a teacher is in fact convicted of assault, the punishment is typically minimal; in the case of Michael Munyaga, described above, the teachers responsible received a small fine, although they could have been liable to several years' imprisonment.
Furthermore, there are evidentiary difficulties; according to Kiarie, Kenya's Evidence Act prohibits anyone from being convicted of a crime based solely on the testimony of a child of "tender years." Kiarie also notes that police and education officials typically try to handle cases administratively and avoid the legal system altogether; in the Munyaga case, the district education officer attempted to settle the case out of court. Similarly, educational officials involved in the Anastacia Katunge case (described at the very beginning of this report) tried to work out a settlement between parents and teachers before charges were filed.
The severity of the assault charge depends largely on whether the doctor who examines the victim and fills out the required police medical form, the "P3" form, classifies the injury as "harm" or "grievous harm." According to the P3 form, "[h]arm means any bodily hurt, disease or disorder whether permanent or temporary. . . [g]rievous harmmeans any harm which amounts to main, or endangers life or seriously or permanently injures health, or which is likely so to impair health, or which extends to permanent disfigurement, or to any permanent or serious injury to any external or internal organ." Assaults resulting in harm are misdemeanor offenses; those resulting in grievous harm are felonies.227 For example, in the case of Anastacia Katunge, whose injuries were described as "painful neck and bruises on the posterior aspect of the neck," and "bruises at forearm lateral aspect, bruise at hand on the ulna side," the medical official classified the injuries done as "harm" and thus chargeable only as a misdemeanor.228
No statistics on criminal prosecutions for crimes related to corporal punishment are available, but attempts to prosecute are increasing in frequency. Kiambu Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Muchemi believes that, when corporal punishment leads to severe injury, "generally you find that the teachers are charged. Cases are going down. Parents and children are more aware of their rights."229 One experienced police official, the officer-in-charge of the Naivasha Police Station, Patterson Maelo, reports that he's seen about two cases each year involving parents who wish to press charges. However, Maelo says that he's been able to handle most of the cases without involving the courts: "most of them we've been able to handle at the station level."230 He says they do prosecute in cases where the punishment is clearly excessive.
At least two murder prosecutions have resulted from excessive corporal punishment: the cases of Josephine Mwangi and Kipkosgei Kimutai, discussed above. The former case, however, was dismissed, and in the latter the charge was withdrawn.
In the Mwangi case, according to Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Muchemi, assault charges were supposed to be filed against the teachers after the murder charges were dismissed, but they were never filed and the teachers went free. Muchemi attributed this to the absence of an eyewitness, highlighting another difficulty with prosecuting teachers for corporal punishment: if the victim is dead, it is difficult to find any eyewitness testimony. "If before she died she made a dying statement as to who beat her, then it could have been produced as evidence. Without such a statement, it makes it very difficult to convict."231
Finally, most parents are simply unwilling to engage the legal system in cases of severe corporal punishment. Anne Onginjo, a magistrate in Kisumu, explains that corporal punishment "is an accepted practice in schools. People aren't aware they can complain against a teacher, or fear that if they complain, the child will not get the proper attention in school from teachers, and will do poorly." Therefore, most people would not think to bring charges in the first place.232
Human Rights Watch is not aware of any successful civil actions for injuries resulting from school corporal punishment. However, attorney Susan Wairimu Kiarie has initiated a civil suit against the teachers who beat Michael Munyaga, and is also considering filing a suit in the case of Peter Wanganga.233
The Teacher Services Commission has the responsibility for hiring, firing, and disciplining government-employed teachers in Kenya. Despite widespread media coverage of injuries resulting from excessive corporal punishment, the commission does not undertake investigations unless complaints are brought to it, and rarely disciplines teachers over incidents of corporal punishment.
Human Rights Watch interviewed the deputy director of the Teacher Services Commission, Benjamin Kumu, who told us that the commission only occasionally deals with cases of excessive corporal punishment, but that "if a teacher violates, then a teacher is disciplined." Such cases are "very rare," according to Kumu: "we receive them once in a while, once every two or three years." Kumu claims that "most of the caning is as per the regulations," and explains that the commission rarely investigates or disciplines teachers for incidents of corporal punishment, because "we cannot act on those things that we do not know about."234
One parent interviewed had an understandably dismal view of administrative remedies available: "If the head teacher harms the child, you cannot take him anywhere. If you go to the [local education] office, then there is nothing to help you. The head has money, and he goes to the office,"235 reflecting his belief that a bribe would hush any complaint.
Reprisals and Retaliation
Human Rights Watch has received multiple reports of teacher and school reprisals and retaliation against children who seek remedies against abusive corporal punishment, and against their families. It is no wonder that parents generally fear that their children will be targeted if they complain. As Elizabeth B. from Coast Province explained:
Even if you have been beaten unfairly and your parents are angry at the teacher, it is better for them not to complain, because if they complain, the teacher may then form a grudge against you and then you will suffer more. Just this year a girl, my friend, was beaten very badly, and her whole hand and arm were swelled. But she was afraid to complain to the headmaster, because she might be failed, or be beaten more, and so she did not complain.236
Lee F. reported that "it is not good for parents to complain, because sometimes then the teacher is just more angry,"237 Julia R., his classmate, told us that "if the caning was serious and a child has reported badly to the parent, sometimes the teachers will be angry and cane more strokes."238
Responses from Headteachers
None of the students, teachers, headteachers, or parents interviewed by Human Rights Watch said they knew of incidents where a headteacher had taken action against a teacher who injured a student through corporal punishment. The school might provide medical assistance to help a student, but would typically try to resolve the matter through negotiations with the parents rather than disciplinary proceedings against the teacher.
At several schools, students reported that if they were injured as a result of corporal punishment, the teacher or the school would pay for their medical expenses and/or take them to the hospital; some, but not all, parents corroborate this. Twelve-year-old Ronald B. from Central Province reported that "Sometimes they give you medicines or bandages... if you have injury like a bone that maybe is broken, the head takes the child to the hospital,and he must pay the medical bills if the injury is because of beating."239 Similarly, Alan A. said that "sometimes the students who are caned are injured but they are taken to the hospital."240 Boniface Nthiwa, a parent in Kiambu, reported that after a "teacher hurt my child," the teacher "paid for the medication. . . . He paid for what was needed. . . . The teacher apologized."241
The headteacher at a rural Coast Province primary school told us that he collects Ksh5 per child each week to be used for a fund to pay for any injuries suffered at school (including injuries from corporal punishment). He or a teacher would take the child to the hospital and call his or her parents in the event of an injury: "It's our responsibility."242 But one of his students, Robert G., fourteen, told us that "sometimes they refuse" to pay;243 several other children at this school told us that in most cases, school officials refuse to take responsibility or pay for treatment of injuries due to caning.244 At another school, fifteen-year-old Carol T. told us that if a student is injured by caning, "that is your own wound, so you have to decide whether to go to the hospital," and the student would have to pay for any treatment.245
Negotiation with Parents
In most cases, students, parents and headteachers reported that complaints of excessive corporal punishment were dealt with through quiet negotiation, sometimes including an apology to the parents. One headteacher told us that in cases of injuries where the parents "even threaten to go to the police," she would simply tell them that it was an accident; she went on to say that generally "parents are very understanding because they also cane their children at home. They are used to this."246 Another headteacher told us, "if a child goes back home and complains about punishments, the parents are not happy. Sometimes they come in to see me, but if I explain they usually accept it."247
The headteacher at Kikowani Primary School, Mombasa, a school known for disciplinary problems, told us that he used to have a problem with parents complaining about their children being punished, "but I was able to eradicate that problem." But now, he says, if a parent complains about the punishment, he tells them they can send their child to another school if they want. "It's sort of a threat," he admits. He went on to explain that other schools won't accept children who come from his school, because "it used to be one of the most undisciplined schools in Mombasa . . . even some teachers were afraid to come here." In effect, parents and children must choose between accepting the punishment and having the child's schooling come to an abrupt end.248
The headteacher at Ronald Ngala Primary, Mombasa also reported using this method when dealing with "protective" parents, saying that they "will sometimes say, `If you have to punish, you must punish me, not this child.' We then say, `Okay, you take your child to some other school where he will not have to follow the rules!' Usuallythen they go away with the child for a few days-but sometimes the child will come back, he will persuade them that it is all right for him to be punished so."249
Other Forms of Punishment That May Be Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading
While corporal punishment is the most obvious violation of fundamental children's rights in Kenyan schools, it is not the only school practice that threatens the basic rights of children. In addition to inflicting corporal punishment upon children, teachers also give children a wide variety of other punishments, many of which, if sufficiently severe, would violate provisions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and be cruel, inhuman, or degrading.
These punishments include hard physical labor such as uprooting tree stumps, slashing long grass with a stick, and digging pits, physically exhausting punishments such as running for long distances, humiliating practices such as forcing children who misbehave to kneel in front of the classroom for lengthy periods, and requiring work that can be both demeaning and a health risk, like forcing children to clean pit latrines that are covered with urine and feces, without providing protective gloves, cleaning materials, or running water.
These strenuous, humiliating and unsafe punishments should be distinguished from ordinary chores which students in some schools are called on to perform on a regular basis. A student's shared responsibility in the performance of light chores does not place him or her under the same physical or emotional strain, or health risks, as the punishments described below.
Many children and teachers told us that being forced to kneel in front of the class was a routine punishment for minor infractions (kneeling was often accompanied by caning, but also used on its own). Julia R. from Coast Province reported that "sometimes you must kneel in class for a full lesson as punishment."250 The headteacher at Khadija Primary School, Coast Province acknowledged that "teachers sometimes forget that a child has been kneeling for a long time, and the child will get bruises on the knees."251
Digging was a commonly reported punishment, especially at rural primary schools, where many students reported being made to dig ditches or pits.252 In some cases, students reported that digging was, in their opinion, the worst punishment,253 and others considered it second only to caning.254 Eleanor F., a fifteen-year-old enrolled at a rural primary school in Coast Province, told us that digging the pit can take days,255 and a group of boys and girls at the school said that it was a counterproductive punishment, as it required them to miss class while digging the pit.0
Aaron M., a fourteen-year-old studying at a primary school in Rift Valley Province, told us that he had been made to dig a pit three meters long as punishment.1 In some cases, the digging appeared to be purely punitive, not for any productive purpose,2 but in other cases, the digging served other functions. Students uprooted tree stumps to clear fields for planting or building, or were made to dig fields owned by the school or by individual teachers. At an impoverished rural school in Rift Valley Province, the students were punished by "laboring for an hour in the field [behind the school], digging and plowing;" fifteen-year-old Jacob W. complained that they were particularly upset with this punishment, because the corn grown in the field is consumed and sold solely by the teachers.3 Andrew K. from Nyanza Province told us that "sometimes for punishment you would work in the teachers' own shambas [fields]," and the work typically consisted of digging for several hours.4
At some schools, only boys were punished by digging.5 A rural primary school headteacher told us that normally only boys are punished with digging, which he considered to be a particularly effective punishment, since students find it particularly degrading: "it looks to be kind of a job, a kind of slavery." 6
"Slashing," which entails cutting grass or clearing fields by slashing with a long stick, was another form of manual labor commonly given as a punishment.7 Children generally did not perceive slashing to be as severe a punishment as digging; like digging, some students reported that slashing was predominantly given as a punishment for boys.8
Other Manual Labor
Many other forms of manual labor were assigned to students as punishments. Students told us that they might be made to cut trees as a punishment,9 to uproot trees,10 to pull out weeds,11 "to work in the teacher's shamba,"12 or to plow the school's fields.13 One student in Kisumu reported that he was made to do other forms of work for teachers: "I was told to bring firewood, or grass for thatching teachers' houses. If you don't have it, they would ask you to bring it again."14
Many of the schools visited by Human Rights Watch used toilet cleaning and/or sewer system cleaning as a punishment, which was almost universally despised by the students. Many students told us that toilet cleaning wasthe worst form of punishment,15 some insisting that it was worse than caning. Twelve-year-old Sarah J. from Central Province said "I prefer being caned to washing the latrines. That is not good, I am thinking that you can be getting diseases from it."16 One schoolgirl enrolled at a suburban Central Province primary school told us that girls are made to wash the toilets more often than boys.17
At several schools, forms of public embarrassment and shaming were sometimes used as punishments. Seventeen-year-old Billy S. from Nyanza Province told us that in addition to handing out corporal punishment, teachers "call you out in the assembly so people will see you and know you and that you have done wrong. Sometimes they laugh at you."18 Other headteachers also described using this sort of punishment in a school parade; one of them called it "humiliation."19
Potential Rights Violations Caused by These Methods of Punishment
Some of these punishments can be abusive, depending on their severity and context. Hard physical labor can lead to serious injuries; hard labor or forced exertion in the hot equatorial sun can leave children dehydrated, exhausted, and suffering from sunstroke. Similarly, toilet-cleaning can be both degrading and hazardous when imposed as a punishment and when children are forced to come into contact with urine and feces, without protective gear or the opportunity to wash thoroughly afterwards. Digging and cleaning as a punishment can be also exploitative, and publicly shaming a child can be abusive, if the humiliation and ridicule are sufficiently severe.127 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B., age twelve, an elite primary school in Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
128 The Education (School Discipline) Regulations, The Laws of Kenya, chapter 211.
129 In one case, students reported that the student prefects also had the authority to cane students as well as administering other punishments. However, this authority was removed from the prefects after other students rioted in protest against what they saw as overly brutal punishments. Human Rights Watch interview with Richard O., age seventeen, at an urban secondary school in Central Province, May 7, 1999.
130 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher John M. Mburu, Mirera Primary School, Naivasha District, May 6, 1999. Since caning is part of the daily routine in many classrooms, and is used to punish children for even the most trivial of infractions, it is easy to understand why a headteacher might feel that having sole responsibility for caning might disrupt his day too much.
131 Human Rights Watch interview with Municipal Education Officer, Mombasa, May 10, 1999.
132 Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F., Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
133 Human Rights Watch interview with Sarah J., Central Province, May 7, 1999.
134 Human Rights Watch interview with Franz P., Rift Valley Province, May 6, 1999.
135 Human Rights Watch interview with Paul L., age nine, at a primary school in Rift Valley Province, May 6, 1999.
136 Human Rights Watch interview with Owen F., age sixteen, at an urban primary school in Coast Province, May 10, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Billy S., age seventeen, at a secondary school located in Nyanza Province, May 10, 1999.
137 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher Dan Odour, Kisumu Day Secondary School, Kisumu, May 10, 1999.
138 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B.
139 Human Rights Watch interview with upper primary teachers Joyce Muli and Joyce Wekesa, Pandipieri Primary School, Kisumu, May 10, 1999.
140 Human Rights Watch interview with Deborah D.
141 The Kiswahili, a coastal people, speak Swahili as their native language, but elsewhere in Kenya, Kiswahili is learned as a second or third language. The use of corporal punishment or any other coercive method against children who are found speaking their native language is inconsistent with provisions of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child, that state that children of linguistic minorities or persons of indigenous origin shall not be denied the right to use his or her own language (article 30), and that one of the purposes of education shall be to further the development of respect for the child's own cultural identity and language (article 29).
142 Human Rights Watch interview with Margaret M., Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
143 Human Rights Watch interview with Ethel A., Coast Province, May 11, 1999. A commonly held view among Kenyan children is that math teachers cane more frequently than others, linking strokes to exam and homework performance and incorrect answers given to questions in class. Primary student Alex J. told us that "The math teacher gives you too much work and without giving you instruction on the method of how to do the problems. Then when you can't do it, you're caned. That is bad teaching. Everyday, someone in my class is caned." Human Rights Watch interview with Alex J., age seventeen, Nyanza Province, May 10, 1999.
144 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B.
145 Human Rights Watch interview with Carol T.
146 As examples of the former, making noise or talking in class, disobedience or rudeness, leaving the classroom or school when the teacher is away, selling or using drugs, smoking cigarettes, and jumping on tables. And of the latter, a child's problems may arise from poverty or discord in the family.
147 Human Rights Watch interview with Andrew K.
148 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B.
149 Human Rights Watch interview with Richard O.
150 Human Rights Watch interview with Susan S., Central Province, May 6, 1999.
151 Human Right Watch interview with James E., Central Province, May 5, 1999.
152 Human Right Watch interview with Phillip T., Central Province, May 5, 1999.
153 Human Rights Watch interview with Mary F., Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
154 Human Rights Watch interview with Janet K, Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
155 Human Rights Watch interview with Rachel D., Coast Province, May 11, 1999. Students at some schools also reported that they were caned after all regularly administered exams. Theodore A. told us, "We're punished each term, after the end of the examination results." (Human Rights Watch interview with Theodore A., age sixteen, a rural primary school in Coast Province, May 11, 1999). Several students at a rural primary school in Coast Province explained that a practice exam for the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education was given every few months, and that each time the exam was given, about 80 percent of the students in each class were caned for what their teachers considered inadequate performance. Human Rights Watch interview with Deborah D.; Human Rights Watch interview with Victor C., age thirteen, in Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
156 Human Rights Watch interview with Deborah D.
157 Human Rights Watch interview with Gertrude T., Coast Province, May 11, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Deborah D.
158 Human Rights Watch interview with Sarah J., Central Province, May 7, 1999.
159 Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F. He added, "Caning the whole class is not fair-I would punish only the guilty, if I were the teacher."
160 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B.
161 Human Rights Watch interview with Emily T., Coast Province, May 13, 1999.
162 Human Rights Watch interview with Erik E., Coast Province, May 13, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Thomas A., Coast Province, May 13, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Anita W., age fourteen, Coast Province, May 13, 1999.
163 Human Rights Watch interview with Thomas A.
164 Human Rights Watch interview with Bertrand S., age sixteen, Coast Province, May 11, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Sarah J.; Human Rights Watch interview with Ben G., age fifteen, Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
165 Human Rights Watch interview with Benson B., Gilbert G., and Timothy K., all age fifteen, Rift Valley Province, May 12, 1999 and Catherine J., age fifteen, at a rural primary school in Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
166 Human Rights Watch interview with Janet K.
167 Human Rights Watch interview with Dale L., Central Province, May 7, 1999.
168 Article 13 of the Education (School Discipline) Regulations state that "[c]orporal punishment shall be inflicted on the buttocks with a cane or smooth light switch, or on the palm of the hand with a strap not less than 1 ½ inches in breadth."
169 Human Rights Watch interview with Andrew K.
170 Human Rights Watch interview with Mary F.
171 Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F.
172 Human Rights Watch interview with Richard O.
173 Human Rights Watch interview with Daniel T., age seventeen, Central Province, May 7, 1999.
174 Human Rights Watch interview with Richard O.
175 Human Rights Watch interview with Amos P., Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
176 Human Rights Watch interview with Travis B., Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
177 Human Rights Watch interview with Janet K.
178 Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F.
179 Human Rights Watch interview with Travis B.
180 Human Rights Watch interview with Anita W.
181 Human Rights Watch interview with Kevin K., age fifteen, at an urban primary school in Coast Province, May 10, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Owen F.; Human Rights Watch interview with Muneer A., age eleven, at an urban primary school in Coast Province, May 10, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Susan S.; Human Rights Watch interview with Julia R., age twelve, at an urban primary school in Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
182 Human Rights Watch interview with Simon W., age thirteen, Rift Valley Province, May 6, 1999.
183 Human Rights Watch interview with Carol T., Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
184 Human Rights Watch interview with Richard O.; Human Rights Watch interview with Sarah J.
185 Human Rights Watch interview with Standard One Teacher Mary Macharia, Munyu Primary School, Naivasha District, May 6, 1999.
186 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher John M. Mburu, Mirera Primary School, Naivasha District, May 6, 1999.
187 Human Rights Watch interview with Jason A., age eighteen, Central Province, May 7, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Richard O.; Human Rights Watch interview with Jerome C., age eighteen, Central Province, May 7, 1999.
188 Human Rights Watch interview with Harold D., Nyanza Province, May 10, 1999.
189 Human Rights Watch interview with Maryann P., Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
190 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher Philip L. Chetilde, Kayoi Primary School, Keiyo District, May 12, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher Jimmy W. Kawinzi, Kilalani Primary School, Machakos District, May 7, 1999.
191 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Suleiman Mwalonya, Golini Primary School, Kwale District, 11 May 1999.
192 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Amos Ochieng, Pandipieri Primary School, Kisumu, May 10, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Bernard Kivuva, Kangundo District Education Board School, Machakos District, May 7, 1999.
193 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Amos Ochieng, Pandipieri Primary School, Kisumu, May 10, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Bernard Kivuva, Kangundo District Education Board School, Machakos District, May 7, 1999.
194 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Joseph Lagatt, Kabrirsang Primary School, Nandi District, May 11, 1999.
195 Human Rights Watch interview with Catherine J.
196 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher John M. Mburu, Mirera Primary School, Naivasha District, May 6, 1999.
197 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Mr. Gunga, Kwale Primary School, Kwale, May 11, 1999.
198 Human Rights Watch interview with Janet K.
199 Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F.
200 Human Rights Watch interview with Ronald B., Central Province, May 7, 1999.
201 Human Rights Watch interview with Owen F.
202 Human Rights Watch interview with Susan S.
203 Human Rights Watch interview with Julia R.
204 Human Rights Watch interview with Alan A., Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
205 Human Rights Watch interview with Julia R..
206 Human Rights Watch interview with Ryan G., Coast Province, May 10, 1999.
207 Human Rights Watch interview with Jennifer D., Coast Province, May 13, 1999.
208 Human Rights Watch interview with Anita W.
209 Human Rights Watch interview with Alan A.
210 Human Rights Watch interview with Ryan G.
211 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B.
212 Human Rights Watch interview with Alex J.
213 Human Rights Watch interview with Susan Wairimu Kiarie, attorney at law, Nairobi, May 5, 1999.
214 Human Rights Watch interview with District Education Officer Francis Kiplagat, Tambach, Keiyo District, May 12, 1999.
215 Human Rights Watch interview with Valerine H., Rift Valley Province, May 12, 1999.
216 Human Rights Watch interviews with Jerry L., Geoff D., and Gary G., Rift Valley Province, May 12, 1999.
217 Human Rights Watch interview with District Education Officer Francis Kiplagat, Tambach, Keiyo District, May 12, 1999.
218 Court file no. 20/99, Case No. 851/13/99, Senior Principal Magistrate's Court, Eldoret.
219 Human Rights Watch interview with District Education Officer Francis Kiplagat, Tambach, Keiyo District, May 12, 1999.
220 "Court Frees Teachers; 3 Cleared of Kiambu Student's Murder," Kenya Times, March 28, 1997; Frank Wainaina and Sospeter Muigai, "Teachers Acquitted of Murder," Daily Nation (Kenya), March 27, 1997.
221 Human Rights Watch interview with Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Muchemi, Kiambu, May 7, 1999.
222 Human Rights Watch interview with Susan Wairimu Kiarie, lawyer for Michael Munyaga, Nairobi, May 5, 1999.
224 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher Samuel K. Mungai, Munyu Primary School, Naivasha District, May 6, 1999.
225 African Network for the Prevention and Protection Against Child Abuse and Neglect.
226 Human Rights Watch interview with Susan Wairimu Kiarie, attorney at law, Nairobi, May 5, 1999.
228 Statement of Navote Comwel, November 18, 1998, Case 41/99, Kiambu District Court.
229 Human Rights Watch interview with Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Muchemi, Kiambu, May 7, 1999.
230 Human Rights Watch interview with Officer-in-Charge Patterson Maelo, Naivasha Police Station, Naivasha, May 6, 1999.
231 Human Rights Watch interview with Senior Principal Magistrate Florence Muchemi, Kiambu, May 7, 1999.
232 Human Rights Watch interview with Magistrate Anne Onginjo, Winam Division Court, Kisumu, May 10, 1999.
233 Human Rights Watch interview with Susan Wairimu Kiarie, attorney at law, Nairobi, May 5, 1999.
234 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Director Benjamin Kumu, Teacher Services Commission, Nairobi, May 6, 1999.
235 Human Rights Watch interview with Boniface Nthiwa, Kiambu District, May 7, 1999.
236 Human Rights Watch interview with Elizabeth B.
237 Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F.
238 Human Rights Watch interview with Julia R.
239 Human Rights Watch interview with Ronald B.
240 Human Rights Watch interview with Alan A.
241 Human Rights Watch interview with Boniface Nthiwa, Kiambu District, May 7, 1999.
242 Human Rights Watch interview with headteacher at a Coast Province primary school, May 11, 1999.
243 Human Rights Watch interview with Robert G., Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
244 Human Rights Watch interview with Beatrice S., Jaya S., and Renee K., ages fourteen through fifteen, Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
245 Human Rights Watch interview with Carol T.
246 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Sister Albina W.P. Mwasi, Star of the Sea Primary School, Mombasa, May 10, 1999.
247 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher K.A. Manxu, Khadija Primary School, Coast Province, May 13, 1999.
248 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher A.O. Magona, Kikowani Primary School, Mombasa, May 10, 1999.
249 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Sammy Chilibasi, Ronald Ngala Primary, Mombasa, May 9, 1999. As discussed earlier in this report, in practice, corporal punishment often leads children to drop out of school, even when they are not technically expelled.
250 Human Rights Watch interview with Julia R.
251 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher K.A. Manxu, Khadija Primary School, Coast Province, May 13, 1999.
252 Human Rights Watch interview with Peter S., age fifteen, at a primary school located in Eastern Province, May 7, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Eleanor F., age fifteen, at a rural primary school in Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
253 Human Rights Watch interview with Eleanor F. and Eve A., ages fifteen and sixteen, Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
254 Human Rights Watch interview with Eunice L. and Patricia A., ages fourteen and fifteen, a rural primary school in Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
255 Human Rights Watch interview with Eleanor F.
0 Human Rights Watch interviews at a rural primary school in Coast Province, May 11, 1999.
1 Human Rights Watch interview with Aaron M., Rift Valley Province, May 6, 1999.
3 Human Rights Watch interview with David T., Jacob W., and Bernice G., all age fifteen, Rift Valley Province, May 11, 1999.
4 Human Rights Watch interview with Andrew K.
5 Human Rights Watch interview with Emily T.
6 Human Rights Watch interview with Headteacher Mr. Gunga, Kwale Primary School, Kwale, May 11, 1999.
7 Human Rights Watch interview with Rowena S., age fifteen, at a rural primary school in Coast Province, May 11, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Kevin K.
8 Human Rights Watch interview with Catherine L., at a suburban Central Province primary school, May 6, 1999.
9 Human Rights Watch interview with Alice R., age fifteen, Rift Valley Province, May 6, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Peter S.
10 Human Rights Watch interview with Alison K., age fourteen, Rift Valley Province, May 6, 1999.
12 Human Rights Watch interview with Bernard P., age sixteen, Nyanza Province, May 10, 1999.
13 Human Rights Watch interview with David T., Jacob W., and Bernice G.
14 Human Rights Watch interview with Andrew K.
15 Human Rights Watch interview with Matt S., age twelve, Coast Province, May 10, 1999; Human Rights Watch interview with Julia R.; Human Rights Watch interview with Lee F.; Human Rights Watch interview with Mary F.; Human Rights Watch interview with Margaret M.
16 Human Rights Watch interview with Sarah J.
17 Human Rights Watch interview with Catherine L., Central Province, May 6, 1999.
18 Human Rights Watch interview with Billy S.
19 Human Rights Watch interview with Deputy Headteacher Philip L. Chetilde, Kayoi Primary School, Keiyo District, May 12, 1999.