A grade 5 student from Antipolo City had died after suffering from brain bleeding, days after his teacher allegedly pulled his hair and slapped him in class.
According to Elena Minggoy, mother of the 14-year-old victim Francis Jay Gumikib, her son was slapped by his teacher after being scolded because of the noise made by his classmates at the Peñafrancia Elementary School.
“’Mama, wala po akong kasalanan nagsumbong lang ako, ako pa ‘yung nasaktan,’” Elena recalled his son’s complaint during her interview with Radyo 630.
“Maingay daw po [‘yung mga kaklase] pero sabi niya hindi naman daw siya kasama sa maingay kasi nga nagte-test siya, nagsumbong lang siya,” she added.
According to her son, the teacher pulled his collar and his hair before slapping him. He repeatedly complained about severe headaches and pain in his ear on Sept. 20.
Despite this, he continued to attend his classes three days later. On Sept. 26, he was rushed to the hospital after experiencing dizziness, vomiting, and loss of balance.
Francis went into a coma and then passed away on Monday, Oct. 2.
Following this, the Department of Education (DepEd) has formed a probe team to further investigate the incident.
In a statement, DepEd Antipolo said it has taken appropriate actions to address the alleged child abuse incident in Peñafrancia Elementary School and submitted its initial findings to DepEd Calabarzon.
“As the disciplining authority, the Office of the Regional Director has issued an Order designating a Fact-Finding Investigation Team and directing the committee to conduct immediate, cautious, and comprehensive fact-finding investigation in recognition of the right of both parties to be heard as part of due process,” DepEd said.
Meanwhile, DepEd said that according to the school principal, the teacher in question was already on leave. They have yet to clarify whether the teacher voluntarily went on leave or was asked to do so in light of the accusations.
DepEd also formed a team of experts to “help and assist with the possible interventions like reorientation on Child Protection Policy of all concerned stakeholders, and debriefing of concerned learners and teachers.” (With reports from Neil Servallos)