Pre-school teachers speak out against terrorism

Chua Chu Kang GRC MP Zaqy Mohamad (in blue) with Mr Haja Maideen, executive director of Little Dolphins Playskool, and his pre-school teachers at an iftar session at PCF Sparkletots Preschool in Keat Hong Close yesterday. Mr Zaqy said it was unfair t
Chua Chu Kang GRC MP Zaqy Mohamad (in blue) with Mr Haja Maideen, executive director of Little Dolphins Playskool, and his pre-school teachers at an iftar session at PCF Sparkletots Preschool in Keat Hong Close yesterday. Mr Zaqy said it was unfair that some people have called for tougher screening of pre-school teachers as the radicalised infant care assistant was an isolated incident.ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Teachers from four pre-schools spoke out against terrorism yesterday, as they celebrated iftar, or the breaking of fast, at an event held in Chua Chu Kang GRC.

Agreeing, principals of pre-schools also urged teachers to be more alert to signs of radicalisation.

Yesterday's iftar at the PCF Sparkletots Preschool in Keat Hong Close took place a day after the Government said a contract infant care assistant at another PCF pre-school was detained under the Internal Security Act for radicalism. Syaikhah Izzah Zahrah Al Ansari, 22, was detained earlier this month.

The pre-schools are run by the PAP Community Foundation.

MP for Chua Chu Kang GRC Zaqy Mohamad, a member of the foundation's executive committee, said at the event that he was heartened that the teachers were in good spirits.

He also said it was unfair that some people have called for tougher screening of pre-school teachers, adding: "This is an isolated incident - the pre-school community and pre-school teachers are definitely against terrorism and radicalisation."

Asked if the incident would affect pre-school teachers wearing the tudung, or headscarf, Mr Zaqy said: "Our social fabric is cohesive. We have not yet reached a level where they are looked at with suspicion."

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 14, 2017, with the headline 'Pre-school teachers speak out against terrorism'. Print Edition | Subscribe