“I remember very clearly that the first time you hit me was the fifth day of the first semester in grade one. You threw the exercise book at my face when I had no idea what I did wrong. Your facial expression was so unforgettable that I’ve feared you since.”
She remembered a practice recitation that broke her heart the most:
“One reciting practice saddens me most. I was very much capable of reciting the full text of an article, but my study group leader did not pick me and while [the leader reported to you that I couldn’t recite the full text], I failed the assignment. You were about to hit me, and I tried defending myself for the first time. But you only believed the group leader’s words and never gave me a chance to recite in front of you. Instead, you gave me 20 beatings [with a stick].”
The essay also shed light on the privileged life of such teachers, who receive gifts even with parents knowing that their children took beatings.
“On your birthday, June 3 on the Chinese lunar calendar, some of my classmates gave you flowers, necklaces, birthday cakes, and red envelops as gifts. You highlighted that some parents already sent you gifts that afternoon. But I was so overwhelmed by homework that I didn’t tell my mum. As a result, you hit me with a stick the next morning. Why did you only pick me while a dozen others were also standing with me? You used that stick to hit me eight times consecutively, and there were bruises on my arms. I felt OK lifting them, but my heart was more painful than the physical feelings,” the girl wrote.
On top of the beatings, the girl also shared how futile her efforts had been about informing her parents of the abuse.
“A teacher has the right to beat her student,” her mother once said.
In an apparent awakening, the girl’s mother finally reported the abuse to the local education bureau on June 28. She heard back on August 7, a day after she posted the essay online. As per local reports, the bureau found that the teacher, surnamed Yan, was only holding a substitute position and had already asked to resign on June 30.
For its part, the girl’s school reportedly asked teachers to do self-reflections.
It is unknown whether the student will receive therapy after suffering for four years, but many are hoping for her recovery and well-being.