Woodgrove Secondary teacher earned S$8,800 a month as HOD but allegedly overcharged students S$40,000 for materials

It wasn't enough.

Belmont Lay | November 28, 2018, 06:28 PM

And so it is now public knowledge how much a senior teacher in Singapore can make per month.

S$8,800 gross salary

A former teacher with Woodgrove Secondary School is revealed to have a gross monthly salary of S$8,800.

This was after the 44-year-old claimed trial on Wednesday, Nov. 28 over two charges of misappropriating about S$40,000 meant for students' learning materials, Channel News Asia reported.

The former teacher, Maslinda Zainal, was deployed to Woodgrove Secondary School in 2002.

She was then promoted to become the Head of Department (HOD) for English in 2006.

She is no longer with the school and has been suspended.

Her last drawn salary was made public as her case is in court.

Overcharging over two years uncovered

Maslinda led the English department, and her role was setting work to be done, planning programmes for students and selecting materials for lessons.

She was also in charge of collecting money submitted by students to their English teachers for learning materials.

These materials, known as packages, were prepared by teachers in the school.

Maslinda was to hand the money to the school bookshop, which would print the materials for the students.

However, she allegedly over-collected money from the students between January 2016 and April 2017.

The discrepancy between the cost of the packages and the amount she collected was about S$40,000 over a two-year period.

Misappropriation detected

The misappropriation was first detected by the school's lower-secondary head for English, Jacqueline Chan.

Chan had asked the bookshop owner about the materials and if the packages had already been paid for.

The bookshop owner then showed her invoices with amounts that were significantly different from the amount collected from the students.

The discovery was then shared with the school's principal, Chee Chit Yeng.

An attempt was made to uncover past records of amounts paid.

However, the records for 2015 and earlier were not able to be retrieved from the bookshop due to a round of housekeeping, CNA reported but did not elaborate what this entailed.

Chee then created a table tallying up the figures of costs of packages and how much Maslinda collected.

This amounted to a discrepancy of about S$40,000.

Chee contacted the discipline unit of the Ministry of Education (MOE) and made a police report on April 7, 2017.

If found guilty of criminal breach of trust, Maslinda could be jailed for up to 10 years and fined.


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