The Philippines’ Department of Education (DepEd) announced today that a pregnant teacher from Isabela province who appeared in a video screaming and physically hurting students will be transferred to another school while she is being investigated.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer identified the teacher as Madeline Reyes-Tambacasan.
The event captured on video occurred on Oct. 12 at a Boy Scouts’ camping trip involving students from Cutog Elementary School from the town of Reina Mercedes in Isabela province.
The students were from Grades 4 – 6, reported ABS-CBN News.
In the video, the teacher screams at the students in Filipino: “Go there. I don’t care if I have to face your parents. Even they cannot discipline you.”
She also tells the students: “You animals. F*ck the Boy Scouts of Cutog Grande.”
One child appeared to have been yanked by the teacher. According to the Inquirer, the teacher also spanked the children.
ABS-CBN News reported that some of the children were hit on the head.
The parents of the children involved want to file charges against Tambacasan. One parent whom the Inquirer spoke to said that the teacher didn’t apologize to them for what occurred.
Another parent said that her child wanted to transfer to another school because of the incident.
In an interview today with radio station DZMM, DepEd’s spokesperson Undersecretary Annalyn Sevilla said Tambacasan will be assigned to another school while an investigation is being conducted.
She said in Filipino and English: “Per update of the regional director last night, we agreed to re-assign her to another school while we are undergoing the fact-finding investigation.”
Sevilla said the punishment for Tambacasan will depend on the outcome of the investigation. She could be given anger management sessions or preventive suspension for 90 days. She could also be re-assigned to a non-teaching position.
Sevilla pointed out, however, that students need to be disciplined. “Teachers have to discipline kids. We want children to be responsible [but] we will not allow them to be disciplined in the wrong way.”
Online, some people think harsh punishments are necessary. Many Filipinos don’t have problems with spanking children. In fact, a lot of Filipinos complained when a proposed law banning corporal punishment was passed in the third reading at the Senate.
Commenting on a television report about the incident, Doel Zita wrote: “Students today are too sensitive. They’re just scolded a bit and they will immediately tell other people about what happened. During my time, some of us would have our sideburns almost ripped off by our teachers but we don’t complain.”
Jame Solis agrees. He wrote: “That’s why kids these days are not afraid because their parents complain when they are cursed and hit on the head [by a teacher]. During our time, we were spanked and our sideburns were almost ripped off and we got hit with an eraser [by our teacher]. But we are still thankful because us kids from the 90s grow up to be afraid and disciplined and our teachers can work with dignity and we also love them. Thank you, ma’am. Just my opinion.”
Rona Escobila, however, was outraged by what she saw on the video. She wrote: “She shouldn’t just be transferred or suspended! She should be charged for physical and emotional harassment and her license should be revoked. She doesn’t deserve to be a teacher!”
Gemma Asingua thought how the teacher behaved was unacceptable.
Do you think the teacher should have disciplined the children in a different manner? Let us know by commenting below or by tweeting to @CoconutsManila.
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