Sunday, August 10, 2014

UK: Teacher jailed for hitting a seven-year-old boy when he made mistakes during reading lessons at mosque

Beating is normal in madrassas

A teacher has been jailed for hitting a young boy when he made mistakes during reading lessons at a mosque.

Arfaq Hussain, 36, from Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, used his knuckles to rap the seven-year-old around the knee in what the judge described as 'unforgiveable conduct'.

The offence came to light in December 2012 when another pupil told a teacher that he did not want to do PE classes at the Jame Masjid Mosque in Batley, West Yorkshire, because his legs were sore.

Leeds Crown Court heard how social services spoke to both boys about the allegations. A medical examination then found six blue-coloured bruises to the side of the seven-year-old's knee.

The court heard that, when the boy was questioned, he said his teacher would hit him if he made mistakes.  He said he would be told: 'You’re not reading what you are supposed to be reading.'

Hussain, who has been suspended from teaching, admitted cruelty and was jailed for 26 weeks.  He admitted he kept an eye on the children and reported them to the main teacher if they were naughty.

Rebecca Young, defending, said it was a 'momentary lapse of control by an otherwise caring father and teacher'.

She said he had not intended to cause any injured and was 'mortified' by the shame he had brought on his family and mosque.

Miss Young added that a jail sentence would be difficult for his family, for whom he was the sole provider.

Judge Tom Bayliss QC accepted it was a one-off offence but said his parents had trusted their son would not be harmed at the mosque.  He said: 'They were entitled and the public is entitled to know that those who care for our children in whatever capacity, voluntary or paid, will not abuse them, will not injure them.

'You did injure him. It may have been only once but it was unforgiveable conduct towards a young and vulnerable child.'


'Skim-read, socialize, and don't be neurotic': The 1980s letter to MBA students that is still being shared with elite candidates today

A letter which was written by a Stanford School of Business graduate and handed down to first-year students as a frank survival guide for 25 years has been unearthed.

The candid six-page confessional was written at some point during the late 80s by Shirzad Bozorgchami - now a California-based author and CEO - and offers MBA students the sort of sage advice that is applicable to many walks of life.

'You don’t need to be in a study group, you don’t need to turn in every homework, you don’t have to appear bubbly and social all the time,' the letter states. 'You don’t have to interview with investment banks and consultants, you don’t need to be conservative and safe in class discussions.'

Mr Bozorgchami, who grew up in a turbulent, emotionally abusive home in Iran and was highly intimidated when he first joined the esteemed Stanford GSB, penned the letter to reassure and encourage his fellow students.  'This note reflects my personal thoughts, feelings and suggestions for a more fulfilling GSB life,' he wrote.

Top of the list was Mr Bozorgchami's suggestion to embrace moderation when it came to studying. 'I could never understand why some people would spend hours on putting the finishing touches on a report, when the act involved very little additional learning.

'Neurotic perfectionism at its worst,' he wrote, adding that the sooner this habit is broken 'the happier you'll be.'

He also advised that rather than 'carefully reading an article,' students would do better to 'skim-read' three of them, and socialize a little with the time saved poring over books.

'You often only need to know about half the material covered,' he revealed.

'If you work hard because... you are afraid of not passing, because an ugly monster in your nightmares keeps reminding you that the world will come to an end if you don't pass, you can easily resent the experience and find it painful.'

The illuminating letter also placed a strong emphasis on getting to know classmates, avoiding the harsh judgement of others, and generally being a pleasant human being; which Mr Bozorgchami points out is far more likely to lead to later success than getting the best grades.

'By actively judging people positively, you are exposing yourself to being hurt a little by a jerk,' he conceded. 'But that is a small price to pay to get to know many more wonderful people that you wouldn't otherwise take the chance on.

'We really are a bunch of very nice people here, only most of us are afraid to show it openly.'

Following the letter, Mr Bozorgchami has since claimed he received an unexpected flood of thank-you responses from students who were helped or comforted by his words.

It thus unwittingly became something of a manifesto, and is allegedly still in circulation among new students at Stanford GSB, and other schools around the country.

Four years after he first wrote the letter, Mr Bozorgchami followed it up with an epilogue, stating: 'I am deeply moved that this letter has become a traditional gift from the second year class to the first years in the weekend before midterms.'

Written in 1991, it included lessons he had further learned since leaving GSB - 'a very unusual place, with extremely high standards' - and joined the real business world.

'No one has once asked me about my grades since graduation,' he wrote.

'The more lasting impact of the GSB for me... has been the soft rather than hard skills of management and the resulting relationships.'

Mr Bozorgchami, who published a motivational book called Positive Intelligence in 2012, concluded his wisdom-packed manuscript with one last kernel of advice.

'Not one on his/her deathbed has been known to say "I wish I had calculated a few more NPVs [Net Present Values]."

'Some have been known to wish they had taken a few more chances, loved a few more people, touched a few more lives, fought for a few more causes, caused a few more smiles.'


Australia: Jewish schools in lockdown after Bondi race hate bus attack

ARMED guards, police patrols and traffic escorts greeted Jewish families yesterday as an unprecedented security crackdown was imposed across the eastern suburbs in the wake of the anti- ­Semitic attack which left a city shocked and shaken.

Jewish colleges across Sydney were placed on high alert in the wake of Wednesday’s terrifying attack by six drunken teenagers which left a busload of Moriah and Mount Sinai schoolchildren traumatised.

The gravity of the distant Gaza conflict shattered what should have been just another day for children as young as six and seven at the Jewish eastern suburb schools.

They were confronted by uniformed police officers on their buses and armed security guards clad in bulletproof vests at the schoolgates.

Police have so far made three arrests in relation to the incident involving six teenagers, aged between 14 and 17. They allegedly boarded the 660 school bus and hurled anti-Semitic abuse and threatened to cut the throats of its young passengers. Police are hunting three more people.

The six teenagers who allegedly boarded the school bus and began chanting “heil Hitler”, “kill the Jews” and “Palestine, Palestine” will be dealt with under the Young Offenders Act if charged, which means they will avoid jail and criminal convictions.

It is understood all six youths live around Sydney’s eastern suburbs and attend public schools.

A Moriah College student told The Daily Telegraph last night the incident was being widely discussed and condemned by the school ­community.

“We’re all shocked that something like this could happen in Australia,” he said. “Teachers were telling us it’s something you’d expect to see in Europe.”

He said his school bus was escorted by security personnel yesterday morning and an increased security presence — including armed members of the Board of Deputies’ Community Security Group — was visible throughout Moriah.

The school’s principal John Hamey, in a letter sent home to parents, described the attack as “random”

He said steps were being taken to ensure students wouldn’t be exposed to such abuse again.

“The college, in conjunction with the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies and CSG, has already commenced discussions with the (State Transit Authority) to minimise the possibility of a recurrence of this sort in the future,” he wrote.

Mr Roberts also personally escorted schoolchildren to and from buses yesterday.

Police nabbed five drunken youths following a separate incident in Rose Bay around 3.30am yesterday morning and learned that three of those teens had been involved in the anti-Semitic tirade.

CCTV footage from the bus provided by the State Transit Authority was forming part of the police investigation.

The driver of the 660 bus at the time followed protocol and will not be suspended, an STA spokesman said.

Jacqui Blackburn, whose 12-year-old daughter pleaded with the driver to kick the six youths off the bus, said the 25 children on-board were still traumatised by the ordeal.

Police said last night there was no evidence of any physical violence.

The alleged victims were yesterday being interview by police in the presence of guardians.


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