26 months' jail for 'every parent's nightmare' teacher

SINGAPORE - A teacher was sentenced to 26 months in jail on Tuesday for having sex with a 15-year-old student and exploiting another 14-year-old, with the judge calling him "every parent's nightmare".

Yeo Chang Yong, 30, was caught after the older girl found out he had tried to woo one of her friends even while he was dating her. That was when she reported him to the police.

"You are what one may call every parent's nightmare," said District Judge Wong Choon Ning, explaining that a stiff sentence was needed to deter others and to reflect the gravity of the offences.

"You have broken a sacred trust."

She added that parents are entitled to expect that their children will not be sexually exploited by teachers. "Your conduct in this entire affair has been nothing short of deplorable."

The court heard how Yeo was posted as a contract teacher to the victims' school in 2009, before returning to the National Institute of Education a year later to complete his postgraduate diploma.

It was then that the older girl learnt that Yeo was giving maths tuition and joined his classes.

They met at a McDonald's outlet in August 2010 and began to exchange text messages regularly. He later had sex with her twice.

In the meantime, Yeo took another girl he was tutoring to Pasir Ris Park on Aug 7, 2010, on the pretence that she could study with him after dinner.

Instead, Yeo kissed her and fondled her breasts.

The first victim reported him to the police on Sept 11, 2012, after learning that he was pursuing one of her friends, also a student at the school, while he had been dating her.

Six other charges were considered during Yeo's sentencing.

The verdict follows a recent spate of court cases involving inappropriate teacher-student relationships.

Last Wednesday, a 42-year-old teacher was jailed for six months for kissing a 13-year-old from her school and giving him love bites. In December, a teacher was charged with three counts of molesting a 16-year-old student in a school.

And the month before that saw the commencement of the trial of a primary school teacher accused of molesting four male pupils.

elena@sph.com.sg


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