There were lots of students and teachers around and did not feel did anything wrong. One of the teachers reportedly complained to the principal and, in the girl’s words, “all hell broke loose. “The following day, on 22 July, the pair were suspended indefinitely. Four months later on 22 November the boy expelled. Neither was named in media. Schooling is about reformation of child,” principal Sebastian T Joseph told the BBC. “Was given him chance to apologise but told parents did nothing wrong. So boy said he apologised “immediately.” Girl never rejoined school because according to a school record she was not enrolled. She recently moved from Dubai, where her father was working so joined St Thomas school in June. The paperwork related to her admission was incomplete when the hug sparked a furore. Both students were asked to appear at a disciplinary committee school formed to investigate the “charges against them.”
The school drew criticism for decision to expel the students for hugging. The BBC has a copy of a charge sheet drafted by the school accusing the two students of engaging in “indecent, immoral and undisciplined public display of affection in front of other students and teachers. It alleges their personal blogs Instagram accounts included the “conversations and photographs” of “intimate, explicit, vulgar, obscene, objectionable.” And as Instagram account is private followers see stories,” the boy told BBC. “There’s nothing vulgar or obscene as mentioned in charge sheet.” He said he responded to the allegations by explaining the hug was congratulatory so no other motive was behind it. The girl said committee members had copies of photos they had posted on Instagram and called them abusive names. “An official on the panel called her a bitch in heat,” she said. And by time committee found them “guilty” already missed 4 months of school.
The girl said the school has violated her right to education. During that time, the boy’s parents appealed to Kerala child rights commission, which ordered the school to revoke suspension. But school petitioned the Kerala high court, which upheld order expelling the boy on the grounds that the school had the right to protects its “standard and reputation.” His parents waiting for court to reopen after annual Christmas vacation so they can appeal. “We are pinning our hopes on the judiciary,” said the boy’s father, who has not been working since his son was suspended so he could be home to sort out problem to support his son. He said school officials were not among his son’s or girl’s followers on Instagram he alleged, they somehow saw the photos, made copies and submitted it in court. It seems they were snooping on them?” he asked, adding they would raise the issue of privacy in court. His wife’s concern is their son will miss exams at end of the year, which would affect his chances at gaining admission into college since this is his final year of schooling. Yet the boy has not attended school 4 months now.
School authorities told BBC they allowed the boy to transfer to another school so central education board independent body decides if he appears for exam. In the mean time, the school is criticised for being peculiar with harsh response. On Thursday, the boy received a letter from principal inviting him to meet on 3 January to re-examine “issue.” The girl’s situation is unclear. Her parents are not sure if they will approach court. Although she doesn’t want to continue studying at St Thomas school, she said she hopes they will let her write annual exam so she doesn’t lose a whole year. “I want to study on a better campus in a safer environment, where they won’t treat you in a demeaning manner,” she added. She said she already applied to another school but denied admission because of the “incident.” St Thomas school ‘violated’ my right to education and my right to privacy,” she said. The school policy must boldly print notice on all school walls warning pupils: NO BODY CONTACT BETWEEN PUPILS OR THE STAFF UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES IN BOLD CAPITAL LETTERS IN SCHOOL ADMISSION LETTERS, BILL BOARD ADVERTS IN CORRIDORS, ON STAGE, IN SCHOOL POLICY NO HUGGING, NO KISSING, NO DATING IN THE SCHOOL PREMISES. NO PUBLIC DISPLAY OF AFFECTION IS ALLOWED.ln some societies hugs, kisses show love and public display of affection so in Europe it is acceptable. Though it may seem callous or cold some people in other places are not encouraged to show or demonstrate affection publicly as proof of love. Films inundate children with romantic love without teaching intimacy is a private sacred matter though on bill boards. So children see one thing displayed by the adult world without WARNING NOTICE banning public display of affection. The solution publish school posters to train, instruct pupils in advance to pay more attention when out and about in foreign countries. The liberal views of Europe is forbidden in strict countries so officially in beaches or pubs, restaurants, Temple among others you cannot hug even your wife, husband or own family members in mentioned public places. This must be understood to comply in context of each country or community. There are unwritten rules for not leaving children home alone yet free to meet up in parks with friends among drug dealers, total strangers. Ask about the rules of each country, do not assume dating rules are the same or acceptable in all countries. Including office behavioural conduct in workplace rules, interactions between men and women. So do not rely sorely on online opinions to make the personal decisions in life. Be careful even if your spouse when abroad on holidays.
Pupils must be taught again and again high values of sacredness of intimacy so not to copy or mimic actors hired to play happy family in TV drama. This generation is bombarded by seductive images on TV, adverts, soap operas and magazines targeting them. They lack a FRONTAL CORTEX brain to understand adult world and fantasy in films. Many look for friendship in each other but do not know STI risks and consequences of intimacy. The world misleads teenagers at 16 years old they are adults free to date and indulge in sex with consent in a relationship. So schools must educate children that real relationship is hard work and requires support of FAMILY and friends or loved ones, it’s not secret online chat between bored teenagers. Education policy must redress the mixed message to teenagers on one hand they are adults free to have intimacy by law yet schools expel them for ‘dating.’ So world confuses teenagers and parents have moral duty to care as primary carers to honestly teach or talk about appropriate messages on proper intimacy without embarrassment. It is better to teach teenagers NOT TO BE naive and ignorant of consequences of actions modelled on a fantasy TV acting or chatroom prowls unaware of danger lurking online. Proper education is the key to teach them in early years from 5 years onwards repeated again again.