Legislator asks DILG, DepEd to form task force on school safety

Legislator asks DILG, DepEd to form task force on school safety

Jan 23, 2023, 7:06 AM
Rose De La Cruz

Rose De La Cruz


A lawmaker is asking the departments of education and interior and local government to step in and form a task force on safety in schools amid rising violence and stabbing incidents inside school campuses.

Amid growing incidents of campus violence or assaults involving students, Rep. Angelica Natasha Co, BHW Partylist and chair of the committee on welfare of children, urged the Department of Education and Interior and Local Government to set up a task force on school safety to address such traumatic incidents inside campuses. She said some schools are no longer safe spaces for children.

As Chairperson of the House Committee on the Welfare of Children, I ask the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Department of Education, the Department of the Interior and Local Government, and the Department of Justice to form a joint task force on school safety to consolidate their agency efforts on addressing the increasing number of incidents of violent assaults involving students on campus and campus environs, as well as suicides.

She cited the latest incident of a deadly stabbing in Culiat High School where a 15-year-old male student stabbed a 13-year old male right inside the school. The stabbing incident cannot be just an isolated incident because there have been many other fatal stabbings and violent acts involving students and also teachers, she said in a press statement..

Among the published campus violence are those in Tacloban (where a student surrendered after stabbing teacher dead in Samar), in QC where a teen was fatally stabbed by a fellow minor; two minors stabbed in front of school in Cauayan City in North Luzon, a teen stabbed dead in gang war reported by Daily Guardian in May 2022 and a report in SunStar Cebu which showed that CCPO worried over gang violence inside public schools.

One problem here is, after the initial outrage and grieving lasting a few days, the incidents and assaults are forgotten as if they did not happen.

No, that should not be. That is not justice. That does not achieve the end goal of the welfare of children and of teachers and their families.

It is high time that these agencies make sure there are case follow-ups and a continuing database of cases should be maintained.

There may be a need to put in place more safeguards at schools and in communities, as well as new processes on case management. Bawal pong magdala ng kutsilyo o anumang uri ng patalim sa paaralan. Even added measures are needed whenever there are violent incidents during sports activities and post-incident.

Crisis response measures and psychological debriefings for those traumatized by stabbing incidents must also be instituted, as violent incidents in schools affect not just the person stabbed but also other members of the school community.

Tags: #DepEd, #DILG, #violenceinschools, #taskforceonsafety

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