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Egypt: Student, 8, dies after falling from third floor of school

A typical Egyptian school in Cairo, as seen from the outer walls of Ibn Tulun mosque on 31 March 2012 [Wikimedia]
A typical Egyptian school in Cairo, as seen from the outer walls of Ibn Tulun mosque on 31 March 2012 [Wikimedia]

An eight-year-old girl fell to her death from the third floor of her school building in Egypt's Greater Cairo area, becoming the second student to die in an Egyptian school since the start of the new academic year this week, the Teachers Syndicate said yesterday.

Eight-year-old Menna Tamer attended Sayed Al-Shuhada public school in the Agouza neighbourhood in the province of Giza.

The accident came as a result of a stampede among students in one of the school's upper floors during recess, the Teachers Syndicate's Secretary-General, Muhammad Abdullah, said.

Abdullah called on the Ministry of Education to place younger students on the lower floors of schools and to raise the height of the concrete barriers outside classrooms so that such tragic accidents would be avoided.

READ: Teachers' strike and soaring fees: Lebanon's public school pupils miss class

Following the incident, the Governor of Giza suspended the school's director, the floor's supervisor, and the classroom teacher for a period of three months, and referred the incident to public and administrative prosecutors, according to a statement by the Giza Governorate.

This incident comes one day after public prosecutors opened an investigation into the collapse of the fence of another school in the province of Giza, resulting in the death of a middle school student named Malak Muhammad and the injury of 15 students.

Minister of Education Reda Hegazy ordered 100,000 Egyptian pounds ($5,000) to be paid to the victim's family and directed the school boards in all provinces to conduct checks on students' points of entry and exit to prevent overcrowding. He also ordered that students not be left unsupervised in class or in the school yard.

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