NSP candidate Spencer Ng defends himself
National Solidarity Party (NSP) candidate Spencer Ng has denied allegations of improper behaviour towards a former student after an online blog pointed to “interesting SMSes” he had sent to her while he was a teacher.
Speaking to Today, Mr Ng – who is contesting in the Marine Parade Group Representation Constituency (GRC) with fellow candidate Nicole Seah – confirmed that a complaint had been lodged against him in 2007 by a fellow female teacher in North Vista Secondary School.
However, Mr Ng, 31, said on Friday that he was cleared after the school conducted an investigation. Vouching for him was his girlfriend of nine-years, Ms Sarah Zhang. She said that she was among the first to know about the investigation and recalled being “upset and angry at how the whole problem presented itself”.
“He had been in the service for three years and all his colleagues knew him as being approachable, then suddenly, someone ‘flamed’ him and said he was being too close to the students,” said the 28-year-old girlfriend, who runs an events company with Mr Ng. The complaint centred around SMSes that he had sent a student who was then sitting for her “N” levels.
According to Mr Ng, while the SMSes were meant to console the student, who was having relationship problems, it led the female colleague to “jump the gun” and conclude that he had behaved improperly towards her.
“If she (the colleague) had bothered to check on three-quarters of the student population, she would see that their hand phones would have my SMSes,” he said. Mr Ng believed that the incident may have something to do with his being popular with students in the school.
“We had a Teachers’ Day celebration and I was unexpectedly given the most popular teacher award. There was quite a big ‘hoo-ha’ and some of the teachers were unhappy with me,” he said. After the complaint was lodged, Mr Ng said he submitted a formal report to the school principal.
“What was being concluded was that there was no issue, the student remained in the school and she graduated and I’m very happy that she pulled through,” he said. The school, which declined to comment when contacted, referred Today to the Ministry of Education. The ministry would only say that Mr Ng was a former teacher who joined in July 2003 and resigned in September 2007.
Although he resigned about a month after the investigation was concluded, Mr Ng stressed that the two were separate matters. He said that resignation had been on his mind for a year since he was planning to start a new business. Reflecting on the whole episode, Mr Ng – who said that he had often gone out of his way to help his students – acknowledged that “helping students too much do cause unwanted attention.”
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