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TWO PARTS

I. Responsibilities of Teachers Towards Students


II. Responsibilities of Teachers to the School

PART I

WILL YOU BE HAPPY TO CALL THESE CHILDREN


AS YOUR OWN?

A TOUCHING STORY
The story of Ms. Thompson and Teddy Stoddard:

As she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of
school, she told the children an untruth. Like most teachers, she looked
at her students and said that she loved them all the same. However,
that was impossible, because there in the front row, slumped in his
seat, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard. Mrs. Thompson had
watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he did not play well
with the other children, that his clothes were messy and that he
constantly needed a bath. In addition, Teddy could be unpleasant. It got
to the point where Mrs. Thompson would actually take delight in
marking his papers with a broad red pen, making bold Xs and then
putting a big F at the top of his papers.
At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught, she was required to review
each childs past records and she put Teddys off until last. when she
reviewed his file, she was in for a surprise.
Teddys first grade teacher wrote, Teddy is a bright child with a ready
laugh. He does his work neatly and has good manners he is a joy to be
around..

A TOUCHING STORY
2nd grade : Teddy is an excellent student, well liked by his classmates, but he is troubled
because his mother has a terminal illness and life at home must be a struggle.
3rd grade teacher: His mothers death has been hard on him. He tries to do his best, but
his father doesnt show much interest and his home life will soon affect him if some steps
arent taken.
4th Grade teacher: Teddy is withdrawn and doesnt show much interest in school. He
doesnt have many friends and he sometimes sleeps in class.
By now, Mrs. Thompson realized the problem and she was ashamed of herself. Her other
students brought her Christmas presents, wrapped in beautiful ribbons and bright paper,
except for Teddys. His present was clumsily wrapped in the heavy, brown paper that he
got from a grocery bag. Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in the middle of the other
presents. Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone bracelet
with some of the stones missing, and a bottle that was one-quarter full of perfume.. But
she stifled the childrens laughter when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was,
putting it on, and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist.
Teddy Stoddard stayed after school that day just long enough to say, Mrs. Thompson,
today you smelled just like my Mom used to. After the children left, she cried for at least
an hour. On that very day, she quit teaching reading, writing and arithmetic. Instead, she
began to teach children.

A TOUCHING STORY
Mrs. Thompson paid particular attention to Teddy. The more
she encouraged him, the faster he responded. By the end of
the year, Teddy had become one of the smartest children in the
class and, despite her lie that she would love all the children
the same, Teddy became one of her favorites..
After Teddy graduated from GS, HS and college, he wrote to
Ms. Thompson. After several years, he wrote to Ms. Thompson
again, sharing the news that he continued studying after
college and was now an MD.
There was yet another letter that spring. Teddy said he had
met this girl and was going to be married. He explained that
his father had died a couple of years ago and he was
wondering if Mrs. Thompson might agree to sit at the wedding
in the place that was usually reserved for the mother of the
groom. Of course, Mrs. Thompson did.

A TOUCHING STORY
And guess what? She wore that bracelet, the one with
several rhinestones missing. She made sure she was
wearing the perfume that Teddy remembered his mother
wearing on their last Christmas together. They hugged each
other, and Dr. Stoddard whispered in Mrs. Thompsons ear,
Thank you Mrs. Thompson for believing in me. Thank you
so much for making me feel important and showing me that
I could make a difference.
Mrs. Thompson, with tears in her eyes, whispered back. She
said, Teddy, you have it all wrong. You were the one who
taught me that I could make a difference. I didnt know how
to teach until I met you.

SUBSTITUTE PARENTAL AUTHORITY


Civil Code

Art. 349. The following persons shall exercise substitute parental


authority:
(1) Guardians;

(2) Teachers and professors;


(3) xx
(4) xx

Art. 352. The relations between teacher and pupil, professor and
student, are fixed by government regulations and those of each
school or institution. In no case shall corporal punishment be
countenanced. The teacher or professor shall cultivate the best
potentialities of the heart and mind of the pupil or student.

EXAMPLES OF CORPORAL PUNISHMENT

Inflicting blows;

Striking a childs face or head;

Pulling hair, shaking, twisting joints, cutting/piercing skin, dragging, pushing, throwing
child;

Deprivation of a childs physical needs by way of punishment;

Deliberate exposure to elements (fire, ice, water, smoke, sunlight, rain, pepper, alcohol);
forcing child to swallow substances, chemicals or materials that cause discomfort or
threaten childs safety

Tying up a child;

Confinement, imprisonment, depriving the liberty of a child;

Verbal abuse or assaults, including intimidation or threat of bodily harm, swearing or


cursing, ridiculing or unfairly criticizing child ;

Forcing a child to wear a sign, undress or disrobe or put on anything that would humiliate
him or make him feel foolish;

Permanent confiscation of personal property of pupils, students, or learners except when


such pieces of property pose a danger to the child or to others.

(Deped Order No. 88 series of 2010; Manual of Regulations for Private Schools)

SPECIAL PARENTAL AUTHORITY


Family Code (enacted in 1988)
Art. 128.

special parental authority and responsibility over the minor child


while under their supervision, instruction or custody

Authority and responsibility applies to all authorized activities


whether inside or outside the premises of the school, entity or
institution.

Art. 129.

Liability of persons exercising special parental authority is principal


and solidary for damages caused by the acts or omissions of the
unemancipated (below 18) minor.

The parents, judicial guardians or the persons exercising substitute


parental authority over said minor shall be subsidiarily liable.

REASON BEHIND THE LAW

Under the law, a childs capacity to act is limited.


He or she is not responsible for his own affairs yet
child cannot enter into contracts
cannot get married
can only act through guardians in legal transactions
cannot manage her own property

EXTENT OF LIABILITY
Principal and solidary liability
Principal: the responsibility of school, administrators and teachers for
damages caused by a minor student is direct and primary while the child
is in their custody
Solidary: Every liable person may be required to satisfy the entire
obligation.

VICARIOUS LIABILITY UNDER THE CIVIL


CODE
Vicarious means acting or done for another; indirect; secondary;
derivative
Assigns liability to a person by virtue of legal relationship
Article 2176. Whoever by act or omission causes damage to another,
there being fault or negligence, is obliged to pay for the damage done.
(quasi-delict)
Article 2180. The obligation imposed by article 2176 is demandable not
only for one's own acts or omissions, but also for those of persons for
whom one is responsible:
Employers for damages caused by their employees
Teachers for damages caused by their pupils and students or
apprentices, so long as they remain in their custody.

MEANING OF CUSTODY UNDER ART.


2180

Student should be within the control and under the influence of the
school authorities at the time the injury occurred;

Regardless of whether the school term has not yet begun or has
already ended;

As long as the student is still subject to the disciplinary authority of


the school;

As long as the student is in the school premises in pursuance of a


legitimate student objective, in the exercise of a legitimate student
right; in the enjoyment of a legitimate student privilege (e.g. doing
nothing but relaxing in campus with classmates)

IN LOCO PARENTIS
Parental authority exercised by parents includes the duty to Educate, instruct
Protect and preserve physical and mental health;
Supervise childrens activities, recreation and association with
others; protect them from bad company and prevent them from
acquiring bad habits
In Loco Parentis

In place of parents

Parents share their parental authority when they send their children
to school as well as their custody of the children; concurrent
exercise of parental authority

The parental authority is placed in the teachers and administrators


temporarily, while the children are under their care

DEFENSE TO VICARIOUS LIABILITY


WHAT WOULD A REASONABLE OR PRUDENT MAN HAVE DONE UNDER THE
SAME SITUATION?

Proof that the teacher observed all the diligence of a good father of a
family to prevent damage; due supervision was given and exercised; all
the precautions were observed;

Observed proper care based on the surrounding circumstances to prevent


the untoward incident;

There was no negligence present

A teacher should watch out for dangers to the students as well as for willful or
negligent acts committed by other students

DO WAIVERS WORK?

No. Waivers will not prevent a lawsuit against teachers


or an institution

It is the part of the law and public policy that teachers


and administrators are responsible for students who
are in their custody.

Waiver = Contrary to public policy

Teacher can still be made liable if he or she failed to


exercise the proper diligence

CASE STUDIES
Can you guess if the teachers were held liable in
the cases decided by the Supreme Court?

CASE 1: DEATH AFTER FISTFIGHT


During recess, Dom, Gil, and Sid were in the laboratory
room of the school. Gil and Sid were working on the machine
while Dom looked on. Gil remarked that Dom was like a
foreman as he was merely looking without doing anything.
Dom lightly slapped Gil on the face. Gil retaliated. Dom
retreated but Gil followed him. The two engaged in a
fistfight until Dom stumbled on an engine block and fell face
down. Dom became pale, fainted. First aid was administered
but he was not revived so he was taken to the hospital
where he eventually died.
Are the teachers-in-charge liable?

CASE 1
ANSWER:
Yes. The protective and supervisory custody that the school and its
heads and teachers exercise over the pupils and students for as
long as they are at attendance in the school, including recess time.
The teachers complied said with their duty of providing adequate
supervision over the activities of the students in the school premises
to protect their students from harm, whether at the hands of fellow
students or other parties. (Palisoc v. Brillantes, G.R. No. L-29025
October 4, 1971)

CASE 2: DEATH IN AN EXCAVATION SITE


Mr. Aquino was a teacher in a school in Pangasinan. At the time, the school was littered
with concrete blocks which were remnants of the old school shop that was destroyed
during World War II. After realizing that the stones were hazardous to the school
children, another teacher, Mr. Banez started burying the stones/blocks by himself.
Mr. Aquino wanted to help Mr. Banez and so he gathered 18 of his male pupils aged 1011 after class dismissal to dig a hole beside a one-ton concrete block so that the stones
can be buried there. The work was continued the next day by 4 out of 18 pupils. The
students dug until the excavation was 1m and 40cm deep. Only Mr. Aquino continued
digging while the pupils remained inside the pit, throwing out the loose soil. He left the
children to level the loose soil around and went to Mr. Banez who was 30m away. He
instructed the students not to touch the stone . 3 out of 4 kids playfully jumped into

the pit. When the 4th kid jumped on top of the concrete block, the block slid down
towards the opening. The concrete block caught one of the kids, pinning him to
the wall in a standing position. The student sustained injuries and eventually died.
Are the teachers-in-charge liable?

CASE 2
Answer:
Yes. The kid who jumped last and caused the block to collapse was only 10
years old.
Mr. Aquino should have availed of the services of manual laborers to
perform such a hazardous task. He left the children to an attractive
nuisance, went to a place where he would not be able to check on the
childrens safety. He also required the children to remain inside the pit
even after they had finished digging, knowing that the huge block was lying
nearby and could be easily pushed or kicked aside by any pupil who by
chance may go to the perilous area
A reasonably prudent person would have foreseen that bringing children to
an excavation site and leaving them by themselves may lead to an accident.
The simple warning not to touch the stone is not sufficient to remove the
danger that the site would present to the children. (Ylarde and Doronio v.
Aquino, Soriano and CA, G.R. No. L-33722, 29 July 1988)

CASE 3: INJURY DUE TO SCIENCE


EXPERIMENT
Jayson is a student at St. Joseph Colleges in Cebu. His class was conducting
a science experiment about the fusion of suplhur powder and iron fillings
using a test tube. The class was under the supervision of Science Teacher,
Ms. Tabugo. The class adviser is Ms. Abdan.
Before the experiment was conducted, Ms. Tabugo gave strict instructions to
follow the written procedure for the experiment and not to look into the
heated compound until it cools off. Ms. Tabugo left her class in the middle of
the experiment.
While Ms. Tabugo was away, Jayson violated the instruction and looked eat
the compound using a magnifying glass. The compound spurted out of the
glass tube, causing a small particle to hit Jaysons eyes. Jayson was rushed
to the school clinic then transferred to St. Lukes for treatment. He
underwent surgery and his vision was not impaired or affected. While at the
hospital, Jayson cried and apologized to his teacher for violating her
instructions not to look into the test tube until the compound has cooled off.
IS MS. TABUGO LIABLE?

CASE 3
ANSWER:
Yes. Ms. Tabugo and the school failed to exercise the degree of care required
and were negligent in their duties due to the following:
a. The school did not take affirmative steps to avert damage and injury to its
students although it had full information on the nature of dangerous science
experiments conducted by the students during class;
b. The school did not install safety measures or give protective gears/devices
to protect the students who conduct experiments in class;
c. Ms. Tabugo was not inside the classroom the whole time her class conducted
the experiment, specifically, when the accident involving Jayson occurred.
Jayson however has contributory negligence and should bear part of the damages.

CASE 4: SWIMMING CELEBRATION


Ms. Taguiam was the adviser of a Grade 5 class in School of the Holy Spirit, QC. The class
president wrote to the school principal, requesting permission to hold a year-end celebration
at the school grounds. The principal authorized the activity and allowed the pupils to use
the swimming pool. Ms. Taguiam distributed the parents/guardians permit forms to the
pupils. Ms. Taguiam allowed Chiara to join the field trip even if her permit form was
unsigned. She concluded that Chiara Mae was allowed by her mother to join the activity
since her mother personally brought her to the school with her packed lunch and swimsuit.
Before the activity started, Ms. Taguiam warned the pupils who did not know how to swim to
avoid the deeper area. However, while the pupils were swimming, two of them sneaked out.
Ms. Taguiam went after the two pupils to verify where they were going. While respondent
was away, Chiara drowned. When Ms. Taguiam returned, the maintenance man was already
administering cardiopulmonary resuscitation on Chiara. She was still alive when respondent
rushed her to the hospital where she was pronounced dead on arrival.
After investigation and an opportunity for Ms. Taguiam to explain herself, the school
dismissed her for gross negligence.

Was her dismissal proper?

CASE 4
Answer:
Yes. As a teacher who stands in loco parentis to her pupils, Ms. Taguiam should have
made sure that the children were protected from all harm while in her company. Ms.
Taguiam should have known that leaving the pupils in the swimming pool area all by
themselves may result in an accident. A simple reminder not to go to the deepest
part of the pool was insufficient to cast away all the serious dangers that the
situation presented to the children, especially when respondent knew that Chiara
cannot swim. Ms. Taguiam created an unsafe situation which exposed the lives of all
the pupils concerned to real danger. This is a clear violation not only of the trust and
confidence reposed on her by the parents of the pupils but of the school itself.
It was her responsibility as class adviser to supervise her class in all activities
sanctioned by the school. She should have coordinated with the school to ensure that
proper safeguards such as adequate first aid and sufficient adult personnel were
present during their activity. She should have been mindful of the fact that it was
impossible for her to keep an eye on each student due to the size of the class.

CASE 5: PICNIC AND SWIMMING TRIP


Ferdinand was a freshman student at St. Francis High School. He
wanted to join a picnic with his two sections in his year level,
including his own section. While one of the teachers was drowning,
several students came to her rescue. Ferdinand was one of them. In
the process, he died. The parents alleged that they did not allow
their son to join the picnic and only asked him to bring food for the
teachers. It was later discovered that the mother implicitly allowed
the son to join the picnic and even cooked adobo for him. The school
knew about the activity but it was not expressly permitted or
sanctioned by the school. It was a trip organized only by the
teachers and students from the two sections.
Are the teachers and school liable?

CASE 5
ANSWER:
No. The teachers were not in the actual performance of their assigned
tasks. The incident happened not within the school premises, not on a
school day, while the teachers and students were holding a purely private
affair, a picnic. The picnic had no permit from the school head or its
principal because it was not a school sanctioned activity or an extracurricular activity.
The teachers were not negligent. The class adviser of Ferdinand exercised
diligence to prevent any untoward incident from happening she invited
PE instructors and scout masters with knowledge in first aid application
and swimming, they brought life savers in case of emergency. The PE
instructors did what they could to save the child (St. Francis HS v. CA,
G.R. No. 82465 February 25, 1991)

DO 51, S. 2002 POLICY ON


EDUCATIONAL FIELD TRIPS
1. Written consent from parents of schoolchildren joining the field
trip should always be secured.
2. Teachers should accompany children from the time the children
assemble for the field trip until they leave for their respective
houses. Parent volunteers should be encouraged to join;
3. The safest means of transportation should be selected.
4. The drivers should be advised to exercise extreme care;
5. If swimming is involved, lifeguards must be present to watch over
children. If it involves sports or recreational activitires, teachers
should be strategically stationed to watch the children;
6. If resources would allow, the principal or teacher/s should arrange
for optional accident insurance coverage
7. Teachers should treat the students as they would their own
children

ANTI-BULLYING LAW
Teachers and other school personnel shall:
A.Participate and cooperate in all prevention, intervention and
other measures related to bullying implemented by the
school;
B.Report to school authorities any incident of bullying; and
C.Perform the duties as specified in the implementing rules
and regulations (Sec. 8.5 of the IRR)

Immediate Responses
1.Victim or anyone with personal knowledge of a bullying incident or
retaliation must immediately call the attention of any school personnel.
2.The school personnel who was notified of a bullying incident or
retaliation shall intervene, by:
i.Stopping the bullying or retaliation immediately;
ii.Separating the students involved;
iii.Removing the victim or the bully or offending student, from the site;
iv.Ensuring the victims safety, by:
Determining and addressing the victims immediate safety needs; and
Ensuring medical attention, if needed
Bringing the bully to the Guidance Office or the designated school personnel.

Witness or victimcalls attention


of school personnel

Bullyingstopped, parties separated,


medical attention to be given if needed.
Bully to be brought to the guidance
counselor

Bullyingisrelayedtoschool head.
NOTE: Complaints by person who prefer
anonymity shall be entertained but no
disciplinary action shall be taken solely
on the basis of the anonymous
complaint

Fact-finding
Interview parties separately

Referral

Intervention

CPCmay refer the victims and the bullyto


professionals outside the school.

CPCshall determine proper intervention


programs for victimand bully

Determine level of threat


Informparents of steps to be taken
Make recommendations to Child
Protection Committee

DisciplinaryMeasures
This may be imposed subject to
observance of due process.
Parent/guardian shall be informed in
writing;
Student given opportunity to answer
complaint in writing
Decision of school head must be in
writing, statingfacts and reasons for
decision

NOTE: Namesandinformationre:
bullyingincident arehighlyconfidential.
Breachof confidentialitymaygive
groundtodisciplineteacher/admin
responsibleforthebreach

PART II: RESPONSIBILITIES TOWARDS


THE SCHOOL AS EMPLOYER
The teacher and the school are bound by contract. The
policies, memoranda and manuals of the school are deemed
written into employment contracts. The teachers agree to
be bound by these policies in agreeing to be employed by
the school.

DISCIPLINARY MEASURES
In general, an employees actions must not come within any of the grounds
below. Otherwise, the employment may be terminated due to just causes:
a. Serious misconduct improper and willful conduct which is grave that violates an
established rule, related to the employees work (e.g. fighting during office hours,
misappropriating funds etc, falsifying records or grades);
b. Willful disobedience to a lawful order (e.g. unjustified refusal to render overtime work);
c. Gross and habitual neglect of duties (e.g. habitual unjustified absence or tardiness for
no reason; repeated failure to perform the duties required of the employee);
d. Fraud or willful breach of trust (e.g. when employee holds a confidential or managerial
position or when employee has custody of money or valuables owned by employer and
fails to properly account for them);
e. commission of a crime against employer, his representative or the employers family
e. Analogous causes (e.g. dishonesty, gross inefficiency that damages the employers
business; conflict of interest)

EXAMPLES OF POLICIES
Responsibility to inform the school of change in personal
circumstances, civil status, personal information (e.g. address, etc);
Responsibility to inform the principal of the need to conduct
overtime work
Resignation: must be tendered 30 days prior to effectivity date,
otherwise, the school may claim damages from the employee (Art.
285, Labor Code)

SCHEDULING LEAVES
Case law: approval of vacation leaves is a prerogative of the employer. Under the Manual,
it should be obtained at least a month before intended leave date
Sick leaves: must be due to actual sickness, present a medical certificate if possible
Every employee shall ask permission from his/her immediate superior before taking an
unscheduled vacation. Except in emergency cases, the permission shall be secured at
least two (2) days before the intended date of the vacation.
Tardiness = coming late to work past the required starting time of the employee.
Tardiness may either be excused or unexcused. It is excused if:
a. brought about by circumstances entirely beyond the employee's control;
b. due, in the opinion of the Management, to justifiable reasons; or