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  • Nov 27, 2014
  • Updated: 5:51pm

Alpais Lam Wai-sze

Alpais Lam Wai-sze, a teacher at Pui Ling School of the Precious Blood in Fanling, sparked a protest in Mong Kok on August 4, 2013, after a viral video from July 14 showed her shouting profanity at police officers. In the clip, Lam was seen openly criticising the way the police were handling a confrontation between the Falun Gong and the Youth Care Association. Lam has taught for 18 years and won the Chief Executive's Award for Teaching Excellence in the 2010/2011 academic year.

NewsHong Kong
SOCIETY

I wanted to quit my job, says teacher in video controversy

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 06 August, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 12 August, 2013, 8:54am

The award-winning educator who sparked Sunday's protest says she thought of quitting her job after a video of her hurling profanities at police officers went viral late last month.

Alpais Lam Wai-sze, 42, who works at Pui Ling School of the Precious Blood in Fanling, has taught for 18 years. In the 2010/2011 academic year, she won the Chief Executive's Award for Teaching Excellence alongside her school's teaching team for moral and civic education.

In an RTHK programme aired on July 28, Lam said the subject helped pupils learn how to relieve pent-up emotions and build stronger bonds with people.

While she appeared to enjoy teaching, she said the July 14 video of her shouting obscenities during a dispute with police officers in Mong Kok caused her to consider resigning.

In the clip, Lam was seen openly criticising the way the police were handling a confrontation between the Falun Gong and the Youth Care Association.

Appearing agitated, she demanded to know why the officers had cordoned off an area at Sai Yeung Choi Street. When they threatened to arrest her, she shouted abuse at them.

In a Commercial Radio programme yesterday, Lam spoke on her thoughts of quitting: "The school can't function if everyone keeps discussing the incident. In the end, those jeopardised … are the pupils and their parents. We can't be so selfish."

She said her school was harassed after the video went viral. It received nuisance calls and wreaths with her name, and banners criticising her were put up outside the school, she said.

After those incidents, the guilt-stricken teacher penned a letter to her pupils that was published in a local newspaper on Sunday. In the letter, Lam, who also teaches Chinese language, said she hoped the controversy caused by the video would not affect her pupils' lives.

"Perhaps you can't analyse what's right and what's wrong - and also what's real and what's not - right away. Let's sleep on this," she wrote.

"My faith is to care about our Hong Kong to ensure that it retains our core values - defending our freedom of speech and belief is our responsibility."

Lam apologised for her actions on July 26; she issued a second apology yesterday.

 

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This article is now closed to comments

daniel18
Apologizing is useless. What done was done. If Lam wai sze really feel she is held accountable for breaking the law and setting a very bad example for students, she should quit immediately! What really matter is that she commited the misconduct of civil servant!
mercedes2233
The police have a right to do their job without being abused. She was told if she needed explanations of their action to enquire at the police station. She chose to stay and hurl abuse to other people making their livelihoods.
mercedes2233
What is wrong is the attitude. There are ways and ways of communicating and living with your fellow men. 'Not personal attacks'? Did you actually see the video? She directed her profanities in part directly to a policewoman who was just doing her job! That is what is wrong with whom you called 'a courageous young woman'. Many of us don't agree.
hard times !
I think you should get to know the reason behind Ms Lam's outburst of temper------uttering that foul phrase,' what the fxxk !' first before you ask her to quit her job ! On July 14th, she walked past the pedestrian zone with her husband and noticed the booth of Falun Gong was surrounded by banners of the Youth Care Association.When the cops were called there, they just cordoned off both the booth and the Youth Care Association , instead of separating them. Ms Lam thought that it was unfair towards the Falun Gong---------they also had got the right to express themselves in our free society ! Thus she argued with the cops and demanded to enter the cordoned area too since the Youth Care Association men were allowed there ! Her request was promptly denied and she was threatened to be arrested too ! In great anger and stress, she uttered the words, ' What the fxxk !'----means 'how can such a thing take place '! The words were not personal attacks to the cops but only great disappointment towards their injust and unfair treatment of the scene only ! What is wrong with such a courageous young woman ? I wonder.
randomtask
By 'courageous young woman' do you mean nosey and obtrusive? She obviously doesn't understand the term 'Police Barricade'! The two groups were having an altercation, so the police barricaded the area so that they could sort it out within. Who does this woman think she is that she should get to go inside too, while the police are working? You think the police are unfair? You wanna do their job? Then go become a police officer! and then calling the poor police constable a **** and yelling wtf at everyone. Grow up woman! Now she's apologised to everyone EXCEPT the police. It shows how much she's actually learned from this ordeal. I can't believe she teaches 'moral and civic education'.
mercedes2233
Are off-duty paedophiles allowed to teach? No. Are foul-mouthed and abusive people desirable teachers we want in front of our children? The Education Dept should now decide. Anyone can say 'fxxx' too, and call other people names, but some of us choose not to. It betrays the lower class of the name caller rather than the person denigrated.
seikocreamy
This Ms. Lam has no business teaching young children. The easiest test of one's character is seeing whether one can be kind and respectful towards those who serve us, be they waiters, domestic helpers or in this case, Police officers. In one short video clip Ms. Lam demonstrates that she is a spiteful and vindictive person devoid of manners or common decency. What kind of lesson would her pupils learn? That it is alright to verbally abuse and disrespect others under the guise of free speech? This has nothing to do with freedom of expression. It's about good social etiquette and upbringing. Ms. Lam should be fired and never be allowed to work in the teaching profession again.
Dai Muff
Rubbish. If she had verbally abused democrats or RTHK's "City Forum" guests, like Chan Chi-sum's crowd and the Victoria Park uncles have been known to do, the same people after Ms Lam's blood now would be delighted.
carmeledwin
Being a teacher of 18 years she should know that as a teacher, even off duty, you need to be very careful in how you act, for your actions could be seen by your students and by parents. We must not forget that she is a primary school teacher, which means they are age between 6 and 11 years old. I am sorry to say that she did the wrong thing by being aggressive and insulting towards a police officer. We must not forget that it is foul language which no parent in their right mind will want their children to learn. We can forgive her, however, she has proven herself to be NOT "A FIT AND PROPER PERSON" to teach. She should have her teaching license rescinded.
hkpoia
Having read the comments, Ms. Lam, being it would appear an intelligent woman should resign from her current job and apply to become a police officer, then she could experience first hand what it's like. We talk of human rights, I am sure had Ms. Lam acted in this way in any of our neighboring countries she would not have been treated in the way she was. Ms. Lam is obviously a busy body with nothing better to do, she is a disgrace to both herself and her profession, I most certainly would not like her teaching my children.
As for Mr. Lau taking to the stage, I understand he had retired from the police force therefore is free to do as he pleases as he no longer has any constabulary rights or duties to perform.

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