Female students undergo counseling, says DOE
Four female students alleged to have been sexually abused by their teacher have been attending counseling, says Deputy Director of Education.
Teofilo Faafetai told KVZK news the alleged incident is concerning hence taking action to ensure the students get the help they need.
"This matter is quite serious despite the fact the case is pending and awaiting the outcome, nonetheless the teacher resigned.
"We had to take action to make sure the students are able to get back to school without any stigma.
"And incidents as such have to be treated in a sensitive manner," said the Deputy Director.
Their former teacher at Pavaiai Elementary School, Senatenari Lameta Malele also known as DJ Sentinol, had since resigned from his post prior to the criminal charges filed against him last month.
As reported last week, Malele whose out on $20,00 is facing 15 criminal charges including seven counts of assault third degree; two charges of sexual abuse first degree and six counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
The incident came to light when a woman and her daughter filed a complaint with the Police regarding an incident that occurred at the Pavaia’i Elementary School involving a 7th-grade male teacher in March. The mother told Police, her daughter refused to go to school, alleging that her teacher, Malele touched her inappropriately on two separate occasions.
During the first incident in March, it's alleged that Malele called her to his desk and then touched her inappropriately, and then asked her if he should stop, but she was afraid to put a stop to it because she feared that it would cost her her grades; “so she didn't say anything.”
The criminal affidavit says the student told Police that when she told her classmate what occurred, it's alleged that the second female student claimed that also happened to her. According to the criminal court affidavit, other two female students claimed they too were allegedly touched inappropriately.