Student in Antipolo dies days after being ‘slapped’ by teacher
MANILA, Philippines — A Grade 5 student in Antipolo City died on Monday, October 2, 2023, 11 days after his teacher allegedly pulled his hair and slapped him in school.
Elena Minggoy said her 14-year-old son Francis Jay Gumikib was hurt by his teacher on September 20 after he reported about his noisy classmates.
Minggoy claimed the teacher pulled her son’s collar and hair and then slapped him just as the Grade 5 student returned to his seat.
In an interview with Radyo 630 on Tuesday, October 3, the mother recalled his son telling her: “Mama, wala po akong kasalanan nagsumbong lang ako sa teacher (Mom, it’s not my fault I just reported to the teacher).”
“Maingay daw po [‘yung klase] pero sabi niya hindi naman daw siya kasama sa maingay kasi nga nagtetest siya, nagsumbong lang siya.”
(He said [the class] was noisy, but he said he wasn’t part of the noise because he was taking the test; he just reported.)
But her son was allegedly told by the teacher, “Gusto mo ikaw makisali ka rin sa kanila (If you want, joint them too).”
And then, Minggoy said, “Nung binalikan siya ng teacher, hinatak siya sa kwelyo ng uniform tapos sinabunutan po, pagkatapos ng sabunot sinampal po siya.”
(When the teacher returned to him, he pulled him by the collar of his uniform then pulled his hair, and thereafter slapped him.)
According to the student’s mother, her son complained of pain in the ear and dizziness after being hit by the teacher.
Her son still managed to attend school in the three days that followed. But on September 26, the Grade 5 student experienced dizziness, headache, and vomiting, which prompted them to rush him to the hospital.
The student fell into a coma and eventually died on October 2, Minggoy said, adding that the doctor found bleeding in her son’s brain.
“May pagdurugo raw po ang utak [sabi ng doktor],” she said.
(The brain is bleeding [said the doctor].)
In a phone interview with INQUIRER.net, Antipolo City Police chief Lieutenant Colonel Ryan Manongdo said that they are still waiting for the autopsy report that will confirm the pupil’s cause of death.
“Naghahantay lang po kami ng autopsy report to determine ‘yung cause ng pagkamatay ng bata,” said Manongdo.
(We are just waiting for the autopsy report to determine the cause of the child’s death.)
The teacher may be charged with homicide in violation of Republic Act 7610 or Anti-Child Abuse Law, he added.
Meanwhile, in a Viber message sent to reporters, Department of Education Undersecretary and spokesperson Michael Poa said the Schools Division Superintendent (SDS) governing Peñafrancia Elementary School is already investigating the matter.
“They [SDS] are already looking into the matter and [are] waiting for a report from the Principal regarding the incident. The SDS will also be personally going to the subject school tomorrow to make further inquiries,” he said.
“We will share statements or other details that may be reported by the SDO [Schools Division Office] or the school as soon they are made available,” he added.
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