This shows the makeshift faculty room of Math teachers in Bacoor National High School. The room, according to teacher Maricel Herrera, was converted from an old restroom.
Facebook/Maricel Herrera
ACT condemns principal’s threat to sue teacher over post on CR turned faculty room
( - June 5, 2019 - 3:27pm

MANILA, Philippines — Threatening to sue an educator for exposing a facility shortage is an act of vindictiveness and abuse of authority, a teachers’ group said Wednesday.

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers made the statement after the principal of Bacoor National High School in Cavite threatened to sue a teacher who uploaded on Facebook photos of an old restroom converted into a teachers’ room.  

“After class, syempre gusto ni teacher magpahinga kahit saglit, makapag-relax naman. Saan siya titigil pansamantala? Sa ilalim ng hagdan at dating CR,” Maricel Herrera, the faculty association president of the school, said.

(Of course, a teacher wants to rest even for a while, relax after class. Where will the teacher stay temporarily? Under the stairs and inside an old CR.)

Herrera’s post did not sit well with Anita Rom, the school principal, who said she did not order the teachers to use old restrooms as faculty quarters, noting they have the choice to stay in library, conference room and social hall.

According to a report on ABS-CBN’s “TV Patrol,” the school is eyeing to file administrative case, cyberlibel and destruction of government property against Herrera.

“Ang sinira ay hindi lamang ang imahe ng Bacoor National High School kundi buong imahe ng DepEd,” Rom was quoted as saying in the report.

(The image of Bacoor National High School was not only ruined but also the entire image of DepEd.)

But for ACT, what Herrera did was a simple act of telling the truth with an aim to call the attention of the authorities to address woes in the educational system.

“What Ms. Herrera is being made to suffer right now is a clear case of union repression and violation of her academic freedom,” ACT said.

The teachers’ group added that punishing Herrera is “pure vindictiveness and abuse of authority.”

“She is being shamed and punished for speaking truth to power, a courageous act to stand for the welfare of teachers who were plopped in a dismal condition, but the powers-that-be took offense and now threatens her employment,” ACT said.

ACT: DepEd is turning a blind eye on sad state of schools

DepEd only has itself to blame it was put in bad light after the woes of teachers were exposed, ACT said as it condemned the agency chief, Secretary Leonor Briones, for saying in media reports that the case is isolated and the move is “more dramatic” and “more touching.”

“The deficiencies are of the government’s doing and not of the teachers’,” ACT said.

It added: “The agency, though, seems to not be getting any nearer to squarely confronting the problem. It turns a blind eye on the dominantly dismal state of public schools, only choosing to see the very rare state-of-the-art classrooms it exhibits for its touted 21st century education and is lulled in its illusion that the school opening is ‘so far, so good.’”

Over 27.2 million students returned to public elementary and high schools all over the country as the school year 2019-2020 officially opened Monday. — Gaea Katreena Cabico

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