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Taguig schools adopt program vs bullying

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A senior elementary student guides her little brother for a long walk to reach their school at Barangay North Fairview Elementary School in Quezon City Monday (June 3,2013). (MNS photo)

A senior elementary student guides her little brother for a long walk to reach their school at Barangay North Fairview Elementary School in Quezon City Monday (June 3,2013). (MNS photo)

MANILA, June 6 (Mabuhay) – To report incidents of bullying, the city government of Taguig and local Department Education (DepEd) have agreed to form Students’ Anti-Bullying Action Center (SABAC) in every public school in the city this school year, according to DepEd official on Thursday.

In an interview, DepEd Taguig-Pateros administrator Dr. George Tizon said that with the permission of Mayor Lani Cayetano they will take the form of an information desk manned by students, will provide a more comfortable venue for pupils to come out in the open before their problems with so-called bullies get any worse.

According to Tizon, these information desks will help bring matters of conflict resolution between kids to where they should be addressed—at home, where parents or guardians can take the lead.

He added the SABAC program will be composed of the school’s Supreme Student Government (SSG) and Parent-Teachers Association (PTA). The SSG will designate an officer to each desk.

Tizon noted that children tend not to reveal or share their bullying problem to their parents or even teachers for fear of getting reprimanded.

The SABAC program aims to change this by also urging witnesses of bullying among students to report an incident on the behalf of the victim, which could be their friend.

“Our target is not only the victim, but also the witness,” Tizon said, adding that the anonymity of complainants will be honored by SABAC.

The DepEd official went on to describe the report-a-bully process, which begins by filling up a complainant’s form.

“Once filled up and we get the identity of the victim and the bully, the SSG officer will report the incident to their adviser. The SSG adviser will then report it to the principal, who will then inform the guidance counselor.”

From there, the PTA, upon the recommendation of the guidance counselor, will set up communication between the parents of the victim and bully.

For complainants who’d rather not engage in face-to-face reporting, Tizon said that drop boxes or suggestion boxes will also be set up in various locations within the school.

“Complaints from these drop boxes will only be seen and read by the principal or SSG adviser. Because we understand that there are some kids who do not want to reveal their troubles to even their peers,” he explained.

Tizon said he expects the full implementation of the SABAC program in all 34 public schools (12 high school, 22 elementary) in Taguig as the new school year progresses. “We are just awaiting the memorandum.”

He said the local DepEd conducted a seminar among representatives of the city’s 34 public schools during the summer vacation in order to prepare for the program’s implementation.

This was followed by an information drive at the various schools on how to report a bully. (MNS)

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