Students Beat Strict School Master, Police Say

Phnom Penh municipal police were awaiting warrants Sunday to arrest four high school students who they say beat a school master unconscious near his classroom.

Khat Dara Rachana, 40, deputy director of Wat Koh High School, was seriously wounded when two students attacked him, clubbing him with glass bottles, Daun Penh district Deputy Police Chief Ouch Thorn said. Police suspect the two students attacked Khat Dara Rachana because he is a strict disciplinarian.

Authorities filed requests to ar­rest four students who did not show up for classes after the attack, Ouch Thorn said.

The attack occurred Wednes­day around noon as Khat Dara Rachana was driving his motorcycle toward his home near Phsar Thmei. The students came up from behind him and struck him on the back of the head with a bottle. Khat Dara Rachana fell off the motorcycle and was rushed to the hospital, where he was treated and released. Khat Dara Rachana said he did not get a good look at his attackers. He said his insistence that students trim their hair might have spurred the attack.

The case has sent a chill through the school, another deputy director, Mak Manith, said. Throughout the city, teachers and administrators increasingly are afraid of their students, officials said. Police have vowed to make an arrest but need more cooperation from students and their families, Ouch Thorn said.

“I want all the parents to be stricter with their children,” he said. “And please cooperate with us in order to improve our education system.”

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