Beijing Police Dismiss Parents’ Allegations of Kindergarten Abuse
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2017-11-29 13:49:58

Police in Beijing on Tuesday said allegations by parents that child abuse had occurred at an RYB Education facility in the capital were untrue.

The kindergarten in Beijing, which belongs to one of China’s most well-known early education franchises, came under scrutiny last week when parents first went to police with allegations that included sexual molestation and giving children medicine and injections without parental consent.

Chaoyang District police said in a statement posted to their Weibo microblog that claims of drugging and molestation of children were unfounded.

A parent surnamed Gou had made up a story that his child had been fed pharmaceutical tablets, the statement said. Gou had used tablets belonging to a member of his family, and then asked the child leading questions about them. Gou recorded a video of the scene that he posted to a parents’ group on messaging app WeChat, the police post added. That video was then downloaded by a television journalist surnamed Liu, who used it as part of a news report without verifying the authenticity of the clip.

Another parent, surnamed Zhao, had also falsified details surrounding her claim that her daughter underwent a physical examination in the presence of naked middle-aged and elderly male doctors. The woman was willing to clarify the facts and make a public apology, the police statement added.

Some 113 hours of surveillance video had been recovered, but so far no evidence was found that suggested that any children had been abused, the police said.

The children attending the RYB facility are aged from 2 to 6.

In a separate post on Saturday, police said that a 22-year-old teacher surnamed Liu had been detained.

Tuesday’s post from the police also elaborated on Liu’s case, saying that she had been detained for allegedly using sewing needles on children who refused to take naps at the appropriate time.

“The public security bureau will investigate unlawful criminal acts that allegedly infringe upon minors, and take firm and strict action,” the police statement said. “As for intentionally making up and spreading rumors, the public security authorities will deal with that seriously in accordance with the law.”

On Wednesday, Beijing media reported that the Chaoyang District discipline inspection and supervision commissions had put three education officials in the district under investigation for lapses in their oversight of private education institutions.

This article has been updated to include Wednesday’s report.

Editor: Colum Murphy.

(Header image: Children wait for their parents to pick them up at the RYB Education New World kindergarten in Beijing, Nov. 24 2017. IC)