Colegio de San Lorenzo in QC announces closure on first day of face-to-face classes

·Contributor
·3 min read
Colegio de San Lorenzo, colloquially known as
Colegio de San Lorenzo, colloquially known as "SanLo," announced its closure on August 15. (PHOTO: sanlo.edu.ph)

The Colegio de San Lorenzo–Quezon City (CDSL) has officially announced its permanent closure on its supposed first day of face-to-face classes since the pandemic struck, causing confusion and sparking outrage from students, parents, and its faculty.

In a short notice letter sent to parents and students, CDSL said that they are closing due to “financial instability and lack of financial viability” after students have already paid their tuition and other expenses, including uniforms and books.

“Due to the financial instability and lack of financial viability brought about by the ongoing pandemic and exacerbated by consistent low enrollment turnout over the past years, the Board of Trustees has come to the painful and difficult decision to permanently close our educational institution, Colegio De San Lorenzo,” the letter read.

While CDSL assured that the students would be refunded, the school’s constituents vented their frustrations about the late notice, staging a general assembly at the school’s gym.

Janice Tan, one of the parents in attendance, posted videos of the assembly on Monday (Aug 15) on Facebook.

“The concerns of students and parents of Colegio de San Lorenzo are saddening. How about the graduating students? How about those who were supposed to graduate with honors, when they transfer to other schools it will be gone. How about the special care students which are not accepted in every school?” Tan said in Filipino.

She also questioned the timeliness of the documents needed to transfer to other schools as the school year has already started.

According to Tan, only the school’s legal team faced the students and parents. The president of the school, Mary Claire Therese Balgan, did not show up during the assembly.

Meanwhile, one of the school’s professors also took to Facebook to demand accountability from the school’s management because the faculty were also not aware of the school’s sudden closure.

According to Jomarie Corro-Reyes, most of the faculty were already “all systems go” and were excited because of the comeback of face-to-face classes after almost three years of online classes.

She said that the faculty was called for a seminar on Friday (Aug 12) but was met with the College Executive Director’s announcement that the seminar was postponed and lawyers will come by Monday (Aug 15) to explain.

“All faculty, all staff, all offices were hung out to dry. In short, iniwan sa ere (left hanging),” Corro-Reyes said.

“No words can describe how we're feeling. Pero paano pa kaya ang mga students who were supposed to have their first day of classes today? Ang parents na kampante na sana na gagraduate na ang mga anak nila, isang taon na lang? Ang mga working student na naghihikahos para ma-enroll ang sarili at nagsisikap para ma-attain ang latin honors?” she added.

(But how about the students who were supposed to have their first day of classes today? The parents who were sure their children will finally graduate? The working students working hard to enroll and attain latin honors?)

No cooperation with DepEd, CHED

The school management also reportedly failed to inform the Department of Education (DepEd) of the closure and is now in talks with the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).

According to DepEd spokesperson Michael Poa, CDSL did not communicate their plans with them.

“They did not formally inform the department of their intent to close,” Poa said.

Poa assured that DepEd will only acknowledge the closure of CDSL “once we are assured that the transfer credentials of the affected students are processed and released by the school.”

Pola Rubio is a news writer and photojournalist covering Philippine politics and events. She regularly follows worldwide and local happenings. She advocates for animal welfare and press freedom. Follow her twitter @polarubyo for regular news and cat postings. The views expressed are her own.

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