By Merlina Hernando-Malipot
Education secretary Leonor Briones vowed Monday to hold the school and its officials responsible for not protecting the rights of their students in the middle of the controversial burning of bags in a private school in Camarines Sur in Bicol.
In a telephone interview with the Manila Bulletin, Briones stressed that DepEd closely monitored the development of the Bicol Central Academy (BCA) incident in Libmanan, Camarines Sur, with the school manager-owner, identified as James Jaucian, going to reportedly ordered the incineration. of student bags for not complying with the "no-bag" policy at a school event. In addition, a video of him who scolds students currently rounds online, along with photos of the burnt bags and other properties of the students.
On Sunday, Briones said she already received the partial report on the incident from DepEd Region 5 Regional Director Gilbert Sadsad. She also instructed the regional director to "go to school to investigate herself" and that DepEd expects a fuller report on the incident after the visit mentioned.
Classes to continue
Despite the incident, Briones believes that lessons should be continued at school.
Briones said that DepEd is not yet making a recommendation to cancel classes because it affects the school calendar. "We have graduating children there … it's the debtor, so why should the students suffer?" She asked.
"I would not want the lessons to be derailed," Briones continued. "He [school administrator] must be persuaded that he is taking leave and not the children, because if he is not there, he can not do anything, "she added.
"My main position is that the lessons have to be continued, he has to say goodbye and someone has to be appointed – temporarily – on the recommendation of the regional director or superintendent and the council must take immediate action," said Briones. "He has to say goodbye so that he can calm down and look at the charges against him," she explained.
Meanwhile, Briones noted that DepEd will try to ensure that the BCA takes action – particularly in choosing the school administrator. "We have to let the school board account for their choice of school administrator," she said.
"A school administrator who is raging and temperamental can not have a place in an educational institution," Briones said. "I think the school should do something about it, especially to their manager, because he obviously should not be in an institution that cares for young children," she added. At DepEd she noted that "we must take action so that we will not be an example for other schools to follow."
Meanwhile, a parenting lawyer also condemned the incident that it & # 39; unacceptable & # 39; called.
Atty. Joseph Noel Estrada said in a telephone interview with the Manila Bulletin that what happened in BCA is not acceptable "on the part of the administrator and the educational institution" and "can not be tolerated".
"If they are underage, that administrator can be liable for child abuse," Estrada said. "That could also be a violation of the DepEd CPP, particularly forbidding anti-corporal punishment," he added. The school, he explained, can also be held "liable for damage because it is unreasonable".
Damage to the characteristics of the students, said Estrada, is "already out of the office to discipline students." If the administrator is a professional teacher, he said that "he is personally liable for his license to be revoked" by the Professional Regulation Committee (PRC).
Parents, said Estrada, can also file a criminal case for child abuse. "There is psychological trauma, I think it was the intention to really humiliate or terrorize the students," he explained. "They do not have to wait for DepEd because it's a different matter," he added.
The causes of the action available to parents and / or students, said Estrada, include a violation of DepEd Order 40, s 2012 or child protection policy; RA 7610 or the Anti-Child Abuse Law; and Civil Case of Damages.
Levels of action
Briones maintains that there are two levels of action that can be done by parents and students in relation to the incident. "If there are two levels of action, there are two levels of location for the action: one is located at the level of the government itself outside DepEd and the other is at the level of DepEd," she said.
"The parents can act on their level because they are their children and the characteristics of the children themselves." Said Briones. When filing a complaint, she noted that parents can act "individually or as a group" outside DepEd and it must be "a complaint to the police or the competent agency" and they can quote all relevant circulars from DepEd.
Briones also advised the parents of the affected students to touch the Parents Teachers' Association (PTA) or the wider governing body within the school. The parents, she noted, can "complain directly to the authorities, either alone or as a group and they can demand the return or payment of damage to the property of the children", which was allegedly under the instructions of Jaucian.
On the part of DepEd Briones said that it will ensure that children's rights are protected in accordance with their national commitment. DepEd said that it has regulatory functions at private schools and that it can also look at financial aid to the school, if there is one.
DepEd said in a separate statement that if the responsibilities of the school administrator for the incident have been identified, it has regulatory tools for private schools that may include a "possible suspension or withdrawal of the work permit from the school, or disqualification from the school to participate." take part in the Education Service Contracting and Senior High School Voucher Program, or non-issue of favorable recommendations for tax exemption, such as import duties. "