THE principal of Abellana National School was placed under a 90-day preventive suspension by the Department of Education (DepEd)-7 pending an investigation into allegations of immorality, grave misconduct, conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service and oppression.
Emelita Lanaria is facing an administrative case for allegedly having an affair with a married man, who is also a teacher, even as she herself has separated from her husband.
The complaint against Lanaria also alleged that she made her office into a “personal abode”, allegedly using the premises for drinking sessions with friends and spends the night inside.
She also allegedly made one of the complainants, a utility worker of the school, as her personal laundry woman.
The suspension order that was signed by Dr. Juliet Jeruta, regional director of DepEd-7, was issued last January 4, 2017 and served to the principal on Monday.
The complaints against Lanaria came in the wake of her suspension and eventual dismissal of Leomar Amagos and Nancy Algabre last August 15, 2017.
Amagos was a security guard and his wife used to be Lanaria’s secretary. Algabre on the other hand was a utility worker before her termination from
The complaints were filed before the Office of the Ombudsman, but were referred to the DepEd-7 office.
According to Algabre, she was hired as a utility worker for the school but was forced to wash the clothes of the principal and her alleged lover.
“I became her laundry woman, which is already outside the scope of my duties and responsibilities,” Algabre said in Cebuano.
She also told of instances were she was berated by Lanaria if she got delayed in washing the principal’s clothes.
She likewise claimed that Lanaria used her office for drinking sprees with her alleged paramour and his friends and allowed them to stay overnight inside her office.
“Last December, the principal no longer renewed my contract because of the complaint that I filed against her,” she added.
Amagos, on the other had said he was suspended and terminated by Lanaria without sufficient grounds.
Amagos, who served as school guard, was suspended last July then terminated in November last year.
“Even if the DepEd-Cebu City Division already ordered my return to work, she still did not follow and instead terminated my services,” Amagos said.
He claimed that he also served as the cook of the principal.
He accused Lanaria of maltreating his wife, who used to work as her secretary, which forced her to resign.
In a text message sent by Lanaria to CDN, the principal refused to comment on the matter saying she was not allowed to do so by the disciplining authority.
She however said the order is not yet final, and her lawyer has already filed a motion for reconsideration against the complaint.
In her counter-affidavit, Lanaria vehemently denied all the allegations against her.
She said she only asked Algabre to wash the clothes used in cleaning her office.
She also denied having an illicit affair with a married man, and explained that they were just friends.
Lanaria said the accusations against her are fabricated, malicious and concocted with intent to malign her reputation for the benefit of those who wanted her ousted as school principal.
Meanwhile, DepEd-Cebu City Schools Division Superintendent Dr. Bianito Dagatan clarified that the preventive suspension is not a penalty, but rather a move to prevent her from influencing witnesses or tampering with records to influence the decision of the case.
Dagatan said that while Lanaria is suspended, a district supervisor will run the school to ensure that there will be no disruptions.