Barbados Teacher participated in creating “prank” beating of students video (Huh?)

Sometimes I can’t figure things out at all. This is one of those times.

A few days ago The Bajan Reporter posted a video that was said to be of a teacher beating students with a belt. (BREAKING NEWS: Barbadian students lashed for tardiness – Another St Leonard’s Teacher brutalises young boys)

The video is believable as is the scenario it portrays because teachers do beat students in Barbados and there is an ongoing debate about this practice. There have also been instances when teachers have been photographed while beating students. (see Public flogging of students degrades Barbados)

Barbados Free Press connected with the Bajan Reporter piece through our article Not Again! St. Leonard’s teacher brutally beats boys – Exclusive video at Bajan Reporter

Now we see in The Nation a claim by the teacher apparently in the video, Michael Franklin, that the video was staged as a prank.

We are dumbfounded that Mr. Franklin views his participation in the making of the video as appropriate behaviour for a teacher.

Here is the article published at The Nation. As any teacher might say: Please review and discuss.

(Please visit The Nation to read the article as they deserve your visit. We’re posting the entire article because The Nation has removed and censored their own articles in the past due to political pressure.)

JUST A PRANK! (click to read original article online at The Nation)

Published on: 12/28/2009.

A VIDEO CLIP circulating on the Internet called “Barbados Flogging, Brutality, Coach Of St Leonard’s Boys’ Cricket Team Goes Wild On Bad Students” with a teacher brutalising two boys with a belt in a room is a hoax.

According to the teacher, Michael Franklin, who was named in the video, as well as two parents, one of whom is the mother of one of the boys in the video, it was all a prank.

The video uploaded onto showed two boys receiving blows all over their hands, heads and shoulders with other voices in the background filming, talking and some chuckling.

Went berserk

The individual who uploaded the clip, under the name bajanreporter, wrote: “St Leonard’s Boys’ School cricket coach flogging pupils on a school trip, it appears some fellows went to a strip club and got back late – the teacher went berserk. Yes, they were wrong but to be treated like plantation slavery days?”

The same clip was uploaded by another online author bajandream who linked it to a website, a pan-Caribbean non-profit media outlet, covering news, features and opinions on social issues in the Caribbean region and the wider Americas.

However, when the DAILY NATION spoke to Franklin yesterday, he said he was never contacted to find out what really happened in the video.

“First of all, no one went to a strip club, no one was in trouble. That video came out last April. Second, parents were there. And third, the boys were video-taping and felt that they would have some fun.

“What you are seeing on the clip is not a consequence of anybody doing anything wrong. It was a dramatisation. It looked so real, but it was a prank and parents were there. We were doing some filming and everyone was in one room,” he stressed.

Franklin admitted that the video looked more real than amusing, “but the boy and his brother put it on [in April] and people were a little annoyed. Now it has come back up again with someone writing something on [the video]”.

Parents were there

Kay Brome, the mother of one of the boys in the video, also said that the video was “only a prank”.

“There were parents there and I was one of the parents there. I was in the room. It was just a prank and a demonstration. There was nothing to be alarmed about. The boys had a camera and they wanted to videotape. It was just a fun thing.

“I didn’t know it was going to get to this level. People wrote things there and made people look like something happened. The boys were not getting beat. It wasn’t anything serious and there is nothing more to explain to it,” she said.


Filed under Barbados, Ethics

19 responses to “Barbados Teacher participated in creating “prank” beating of students video (Huh?)

  1. Hants

    The Teacher and parents are idiots.

    The deeper meaning is that they would find comedy in the depiction of brutality against children.

    Our young people are in trouble if this is what they are being taught.

  2. BFP

    Hants old friend, you are 100% right.


  3. John Da Silva

    I have watched the video several times and I am not sure I am buying the prank explanation. Does anyone smell a coverup?

  4. Sargeant


    Couldn’t agree with you more, if it was a prank I for one was taken it by it. Now I look forward to the next production by this group of thespians- perhaps a simulated rape or murder- we can always do with more entertainment

  5. dominoes

    I watch the vodeo carefully and i came to the conclusion right there and then that it did not look real.

  6. jeff cumberbatch

    The question is why? To prove what?

  7. I also watched the video and noticed that neither one of the boys was wearing a school uniform.
    Does that mean anything?

  8. Probably not Al Barack


    You guys managed to get the interview with PM David Thompson to ask him about my money as yet ?

  9. thebooreport

    It struck a chord with many as being real because it is such a fairly common occurrence in Barbadian schools. Whether or not this particular incident was real the wider issue still remains. There are young children, even in primary school whom I’ve witnessed being flogged like that by teachers twice their height when I was that age (which is not that long ago in the 90s). The validity of the discussion isn’t dependent of the authenticity of this tape. Behaviour like that needs to be stopped.

  10. thebooreport

    dependent on*

  11. Sundowner

    Bit of a sick joke.

  12. ac

    @What kind of teacher would be part of such a disgusting hoax ? To think that he even had the nerve to engaged the students is appalling. He should be fired and that is no joke.

  13. BFP

    Hello to “al barack”

    Please do two things for us.

    1/ Learn to spell Mr. Barack’s name correctly.

    2/ When you write, use “Probably not” as part of your handle. You are causing us work by forcing us to edit each of your entries.

    Please comply with our request.


  14. Ciboney

    The Nation, them a believe to contact all involve before doing any story, seen? Yet me not see where them a call this “bajanreporter” (me a go youtube, them what have “send a message” button if you not know the person) – I think Nation shame a lickle website a buss them tail before them had chance to pursue the story, LOL

  15. Gaston LaRue

    I spoke here long before and came again, u does believe them Underground jokers won;t print me?
    I say to David? Isn’t your dady calling you to sell more papers, or you film festival not happening this year? You seem very grumpy and accusing ‘bajnreporter’ of visiting there yet he has not said one thing or even bothered with you since (if it is who I think you mean) they cut you off every longtime since?

  16. Lady Anon

    Ciboney…I think it is more a case of the Nation News browsing blogs to find “news” to fill their newspapers with. For them, I am sure it is a feather in their cap that they could prove that information on a blog was wrong. But, it just proves that rather than being out where the news is, the reporters spend most of their time surfing.

  17. No Spin

    Just goes to show that you just can’t trust everything ya see on the Internet these days…ain’t that right BFP? 🙂
    Wrong way: Sensationalize then ask questions.
    Right way: Ask questions and then try come to an informed conclusion based on the answers (or lack of answers) yielded.
    Now THAT is how “so-called” investigative journalism works in a nutshell BFP…and you just got a lesson free of charge.

  18. Reuters

    The story is still a story and moreso because it appears that a teacher participated in the making of the video. What kind of teachers do you have down there on Barbados?

    As to not believing anything you see on the internet I’d start with Reuters News that had to withdraw 100’s of news photographs that were faked by a group of their photographers over a 5 year period.

  19. BFP Lurker

    What idiocy is being perpetuated by the Nation??

    Am I the only one who notices that the boys are flinching from the strap, the strap is making lashing sounds as it connects with their skin and the teacher is literally flinging his body weight into each lash???

    This video is NOT fake. These young men are being lashed by an older man. End of story. If Mr. Franklin (is that the name of the older man?) is really the teacher behind this and wants to claim that those are not students then what the hell was the point of the video?
    I know of a Mr. Franklin from St. Leonards and I am deeply ashamed of this fellow because he has been accused of FAR worse in the past which all relate to how he handles young men.
    This matter must not be swept away under the FLIMSY handle of a hoax!!

    The school children are reading and laughing while the parents are lamenting that society is going to the dogs!!!