The children were allegedly molested, pierced by needles and fed unidentified pills.

A Beijing kindergarten is being investigated for sexually abusing and drugging children.

Time reports that police are investigating claims of sexual molestation at a Beijing kindergarten run by pre-school operator RYB Education Inc.

Teachers and staff had abused the children who were “reportedly sexually molested, pierced by needles and given unidentified pills”.

Children as young as three recalled accounts of a naked male conducting “medical checkups” on naked children.

Parents gathered outside the kindergarten demanding answers after their children were fed unidentified tablets and gave similar accounts of students being “made to stand” naked in class.

“For two days my daughter has been crying: ‘I’m not sick, so why give me shots?’” one mother told China Women’s News, a party-run newspaper.

“Disobedient students were also forced to stand naked or were locked up in a dark room at the kindergarten,” a parent told the magazine Caixin.

“I am trembling with anger now,” another parent told Beijing News.

RYB released a statement on its official microblog on Friday, stating, “we deeply apologise for the serious anxiety this matter has brought to parents and society.” 

“We are currently working with the police to provide relevant surveillance materials and equipment; the teachers in question have been suspended and we are co-operating with the police investigation,” it added.

The statement also added that the school’s principal has also filed a police report against “individuals who have engaged in false accusations and framing”

China’s education ministry told education departments across the country to “take warning from these types of incidents”.

Since the news broke, RYB has been mentioned over 76 million times on WeChat. The New York listed company (RYB) runs a network of over 1,300 directly owned and franchised play-and-learn centres with almost 500 kindergartens in 300 cities and towns in China.

“These may be individual cases but the deeper problems they reflect cannot be overlooked,” a Xinhua editorial said. “Laws must be enforced, supervision strengthened, teacher wages increased, the childcare industry cannot be allowed to grow in an uncivilized fashion.”