The Department of Education has ordered schools to review and tighten their security protocols after a 15-year-old student stabbed and killed a 13-year-old in Tandang Sora, Quezon City last Friday.
- DepEd National Capital Region Director Wilfredo Cabral reminded school heads to strengthen security measures inside and outside the school premises.
- There’s a need for additional watchmen from local barangay officials and the reinforcement of security strategies that will not inconvenience and cause stigma to the students.
- The Quezon City local government also directed the Schools Division Office to evaluate security codes in schools.
What happened in Culiat High School
According to a police report, the incident happened in front of a classroom inside Culiat High School in Tandang Sora, Quezon City at around 5:45 a.m.
The 13-year-old victim was said to be waiting for the class to start when the 15-year-old suspect came to look for him.
As the victim went out of the classroom, the suspect pulled out a knife and fatally stabbed him in the left part of his chest.
The suspect ran away while the victim was rushed to New Era General Hospital but was pronounced dead at 6:20 a.m.
Relatives collected his remains for immediate burial in accordance with the Islamic tradition.
Meanwhile, the suspect was arrested by police and barangay public safety officers.
The police are yet to determine the suspect’s motive, however, initial probe noted the incident may have transpired due to misunderstanding and jealousy between the two parties.
While the suspect is under custody, he is said to continue his education through alternative learning system (ALS) or alternative delivery mode (ADM).
At the same time, students and teachers who witnessed the tragedy are receiving psychological aid to help them recover from the trauma caused by the incident.
Revamping of security protocols
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte directed the city’s Schools Division Office to evaluate security codes in schools following the stabbing incident.
“The Schools Division Office is requested to review security protocols in schools and implement additional measures if warranted to avoid a repeat of such incident,” the city head said in a statement.
The Alliance of Concerned Teachers-National Capital Region (ACT-NCR) on Saturday also extended its sympathy to the school community and petitioned for thorough investigation of the incident.
The progressive union also highlighted that quality education cannot be achieved in an environment plagued by anxiety, fear, and insecurity.
“Quality education cannot occur in an atmosphere of anxiety, fear, and insecurity,” it said. “As such, the inflicting violence against any member of the school community, whoever the perpetrators are, need to be condemned in the strongest terms, and actions and thorough investigation need to be taken immediately.”
In an earlier statement, DepEd-NCR promised to continuously work with their stakeholders to ensure the safety and protection of students inside the schools.
“In the aftermath of this violent incident inside the school, DepEd-NCR enjoins school administrators, teachers, non teaching personnel, parents, students, and all stakeholders to work together in raising and educating children to become peace-loving and responsible members of the community,” it added.
School bullying and DepEd’s Child Protection Policy
In a radio interview on Monday, Cabral reminded teachers and faculty members to remain vigilant, especially regarding student concerns on personal problems and school bullying.
This is in relation to the department’s Child Protection Policy that aims to safeguard learners from abuse, violence, exploitation, discrimination, bullying, and other forms of abuse inside the school community.
According to the director, pamphlets of the said policy are accessible online and students are oriented on how to reach out to teachers and school officials given an abuse has taken place inside the school premises.
At the same time, Cabral also asked students to be open about their struggles and report incidents of bullying to school administrators to prevent the recurrence of the recent stabbing incident.
“Ibig sabihin lang, kailangang maging bukas yung ating mga bata kasi sa totoo lang po ay mayroong hindi pa rin kayang umamin, halimbawa, o sabihin sa kahit kanino na sila ay nabully kahit sa kanilang mga magulang,” he said.
Cabral also mentioned that this directive is a broad-ranging pursuit that requires the cooperation of the schools, communities, and the Filipino households to help these students transcend their dilemmas and keep them safe from harm.
Banner courtesy: Culiat High School