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DepEd RO V conducts investigation on the complaint for an alleged

impersonation during the 2015 Palarong Bicol


Legazpi City The Department of Education Regional Office V, through the Regional
Screening and Accreditation Committee (RSAC) conducted an investigation on March
23, 2015 relative to the complaint filed by DepEd Division of Albay dated March 20,
2015 against a pupil athlete of DepEd Division of Camarines Sur alleging
impersonation and praying for the nullification of the results in Athletics Boys
(Elementary).
After a tedious and careful perusal of the documents and actual validations on the persons
involved, the RSAC categorically finds that:
1. The RSAC is convinced that the case of impersonation is apparent.
2. The prayer for nullification of the results in the athletics cannot be given due course
by the Jury of Appeals.
3. There are several persons that may be held administratively liable because a prima
facie case is present.
In view of the foregoing, the RSAC recommends the following, to wit:
1. That issuance of a formal charge against the responsible personnel is necessary and a
formal investigation be commenced immediately; and,
2. That there is no more necessity in declaring the nullity of the results in Athletics
Boys (Elementary).
Meanwhile, DepEd Division of Camarines Sur also conducted a parallel investigation
on March 23, 2015. It bears to note that, DepEd Division of Camarines Sur was able to
establish the same findings that the impersonation started from the school to district
levels.
The RSAC handled the case considering that the jurisdiction for issues involving
eligibility and qualification of athletes is exclusive within the ambit of the RSAC.
In the final note, this Office opted not to divulge the names of involved DepEd personnel
invoking the confidentiality rule as provided for under R.A. 4670. Moreover, the alleged
impersonator is a minor child whose rights are protected under R.A. 7610 and allied
DepEd Issuances. (sjdv/03/24/15)
END
(Part Three) More teachers in Bicol involved in money scandal exposed
By Elmer James Bandol

LEGAZPI CITY, 7Aug2013 Due to lack of requirements, the Regional Administrative


Officer and Legal Department of the Department of Education (DepEd) here, have
expressed opinion that the letter-complaint of a lowly teacher, Lea E. Basquinas against
Education Supervisor, Myrna Lynne Bueno, will be dismissed even the preliminary
hearing is yet to be done.
Jose Bonto and DepEd lawyer Joseph Cabiles expressed the same opinion when faced
with Basquinas, on July 31, 2013, who wrote a letter-complaint against Bueno for alleged
falsification of her signature in the registration of the Albay Division Federation of
Supreme Student Government (AFSSG) with the Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC).

The letter that summons the complainant and defendant for a preliminary hearing by the
Administrative Officer of DepEd Albay Division but did not happen. PHOTO BY
ELMER JAMES BANDOL
Bonto told Basquinas in the presence of newsmen that the complaint was not duly
notarized and without certification on forum shopping which, according to him, these are
being prescribed under DepEd Order No. 49 under Administrative Procedure 1 &2.. For
me, there is no complainant, it is not a formal charge, not notarized as required, Bonto
said.
In the same vein, when lawyer Cabiles arrive, he also told the complainant that her letter
was neither an administrative complaint and could not be acted upon. When asked by this
writer as to the elements that will require a letter as complaint, Cabiles mentioned the
same prescription cited by Bonto. It was explained to Basquinas, however, that their
opinion will not prejudice the case if re-filed before them.

The answer for my letter has been delayed, and might be delayed again, in refilling of
the case Basquinas lamented before newsmen. For Buenos side, she declined to answer
the charges as she texted that her lawyer advised her not to comment on it before the
media.
Cabiles took over the position of May M. Redoblado, former DepEd legal officer, who
reportedly transferred employment with the Regional Trial Court following her statement
that delay in acting complaints at the Dep Ed is but normal.
Basquinas wrote a letter addressed to DepEd Regional Director and Head of Albay
Division, received Aptil 10, 2013, requesting to conduct full-dress investigation for
possible criminal and administrative infractions committed by Bueno as Supervisor and
acting as President of ADFSSG, Inc., a SEC registered organization supposedly run by
students.

The empty chair of Buiza, administrative officer, who is supposed to lead the preliminary
hearing of complaint against Bueno. PHOTO BY ELMER JAMES BANDOL
Acting on Basquinas letter, DepEd Regional Director Orfelina D. Tuy, penned her first
endorsement dated April 14, 2013, referring the same to Albay Division Schools
Superintendent, Bibiano I. Santillas, who is supposedly shall create an investigation
committee approved by Tuy, to investigate Bueno.
Preliminary hearing on Basquinas complaint was set last July 31, 2013, but postponed
because Antero S. Buiza, in-charge to conduct said hearing, was reportedly attending
seminar. The same was set again on Aug. 7, 2013. [BicolToday.com]
- See more at: http://bicoltoday.com/2013/08/07/complaint-against-deped-supervisordismissed-before-preliminary-begins/#sthash.JYlMSovs.dpuf
Ako Bikol Representative Rodel Batocabe said the two-day event was also supported by
the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Movie Television Review and

Classification Board (MTRCB) and attracted thousands of youth, teachers, and school
system representatives.
Bullying and hazing are a culture-driven menace in todays youth, and we want them to
have no part of society, Batocabe said.
A summary of child abuse cases reported to the DepEd in school year 2012-2013 showed
around 80 percent or 1,165 out of 1,456 cases involved acts of bullying. The other 20
percent, or 291, involved other forms of abuse, including sexual abuse.
The National Capital Region (NCR) recorded 489 cases of child abuse, the highest
among all regions, with 443 involving bullying.
In Bicol, there are 49 cases of child abuse, 18 of which were bullying.
Speaking at the event, DepEd Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Alberto Muyot also
warned schools division superintendents in every province and city against underdeclaring the actual number of bullying and child abuse cases in their respective areas.
Muyot said the DepEd national office receives numerous complaints of ill-addressed
cases of bullying and said the problem cannot be solved if the real score is not set right.
Read more at http://www.mb.com.ph/nba-star-fights-bullying-inalbay/#fQ3cqTEAufZWJf6b.99
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WE received an e-mail from a parent, asking the period within which a school should act
on a complaint for bullying. The parent said that almost a month has passed since he filed
his complaint on behalf of his child with the school principal, and the latter has not given
him any feedback since the filing of said complaint.
Is the school principal handling the bullying complaint properly? The answer should be,
No. One month is too long. The school principal is remiss in his duties, under our
present law and rules on how to deal with child-bullying cases.
In our last column, we discussed the various acts that may constitute bullying (and cyber
bullying). Allow us now to discuss the general guidelines and procedure in handling
bullying incidents in schools.
We invite all our readers to check the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of
Republic Act 10627, otherwise known as the Anti-Bullying Act of 2013, and DepEd
Order 40, Series of 2012, also known as the DepEd Child Protection Policy, for them to
have an idea how a bullying complaint should be handled.

Section 10 of the IRR of the Anti-Bullying Act of 2013 provides among others the
following:

Complaints of bullying and other acts under this IRR shall be within the exclusive
jurisdiction of thedepartment or the private school, and shall not be brought for amicable
settlement before the barangay. Complaints for acts covered by other laws shall be
referred to the appropriate authorities.

The following are the immediate actions that may be taken in case a report for
bullying is received: The school personnel who was notified of a bullying incident shall
intervene, by stopping the bullying immediately; separating the students involved;
removing the victim or, in appropriate cases, the bully or offending student, from the site;
ensuring the victims safety, by determining and addressing the victims immediate safety
needs and ensuring medical attention, if needed, and securing a medical certificate, in
cases of physical injury, or bringing the bully to the Guidance Office or the designated
school personnel.

The following is the manner how a complaint for bullying may be reported: a) A
victim or a bystander, or a school personnel who receives information of a bullying
incident or retaliation, or any person, who witnesses or has personal knowledge of any
incident of bullying, shall report the same to the teacher, guidance coordinator or
counselor or any person designated to handle bullying incidents; b) The bullying incident
shall be immediately reported to the school head. The designated school personnel shall
fill out the Intake Sheet as provided in DepEd Order 40, series of 2012. The school head
or the designated school personnel shall inform the parents or guardian of the victim and
the bully about the incident; c) If an incident of bullying involves students from more
than one school, the school that was first informed of the bullying or retaliation shall
promptly notify the appropriate administrator or school head of the other school, so that
both schools may take appropriate action; and reports of incidents of bullying initiated by
persons who prefer anonymity shall be entertained, and the person who reported the
incident shall be afforded protection from possible retaliation; provided, however, that no
disciplinary administrative action shall be taken against an alleged bully or offending
student solely on the basis of an anonymous report and without any other evidence.

The following is the manner a fact-finding investigation (and documentation on the


bullying complaint) may be conducted: The school administrator, principal or school
head, or guidance counselor/teacher, or school personnel or person designated to handle
bullying incidents shall: a) Separately interview in private the bully or offending student

and the victim; b) Determine the levels of threats and develop intervention strategies. If
the bullying incident or retaliation or the situation requires immediate attention or
intervention, or the level of threat is high, appropriate action shall be taken by the school
within twenty-four hours (24) from the time of the incident; c) Inform the victim and the
parents or guardian of the steps to be taken to prevent any further acts of bullying or
retaliation; and d) Make appropriate recommendations to the Child Protection Committee
(CPC) on proper interventions, referrals and monitoring.

The following are the disciplinary measures that may be imposed against the
perpetrator of bullying: a) The school head, considering the nature, gravity or severity,
previous incidents of bullying or retaliation and attendant circumstances, may impose
reasonable disciplinary measures on the bully or offending student that is proportionate to
the act committed; b) Written reprimand, community service, suspension, exclusion or
expulsion, in accordance with existing rules and regulations of the school or of the
department for public schools, may be imposed, if the circumstances warrant the
imposition of such penalty, provided that the requirements of due process are complied
with; c) In addition to the disciplinary sanction, the bully shall also be required to
undergo an intervention program which shall be administered or supervised by the
schools CPC. The parents of the bully shall be encouraged to join the intervention
program.

The following are minimum requirements of due process that shall be complied
with in all cases where a penalty is imposed on the bully or offending student: a) The
student and the parents or guardians shall be informed of the complaint in writing; b) The
student shall be given the opportunity to answer the complaint in writing, with the
assistance of the parents or guardian; c) The decision of the school head shall be in
writing, stating the facts and the reasons for the decision; and d) The decision of the
school head may be appealed to the Division Office, as provided in existing rules of the
department.
The same section also provides that the CPC shall determine the appropriate intervention
programs for the victim, the bully and bystanders. The school head or the CPC may refer
the victims and the bully to trained professionals outside the school, such as social
workers, guidance counselors, psychologists, or child-protection specialists, for further
assessment and appropriate intervention measures, as may be necessary. The school head
or the designated school personnel shall notify the Women and Childrens Protection
Desk of the local Philippine National Police, if he believes that appropriate criminal
charges may be pursued against the bully or offending student.
This column should not be taken as a legal advice applicable to any particular case as
each case is unique and should be construed in light of the attending circumstances
surrounding such particular case.

Lawyer Toni Umali is the current assistant secretary for Legal and Legislative Affairs of
the DepEd. He is licensed to practice law not only in the Philippines, but also in the state
of California and some federal courts in the United States after passing the California
State Bar Examinations in 2004. He has served as a legal consultant to several
legislators and local chief executives. As education assistant secretary, he was
instrumental in the passage of the K to 12 law and the issuance of its implementing rules
and regulations. He is also the alternate spokesman of the DepEd.