Provide additional security in schools, CH asked-A A +A
Sunday, March 17, 2013
EDUCATION officials in Mandaue City have asked the City Government to beef up security in public schools after receiving reports about strangers offering students a ride.
Teachers in 49 public elementary and high schools were also instructed to remind their students not to entertain strangers, especially those who offer them rides.
Last March 5, a third year student of the Mandaue City Science High School in Barangay Ibabao-Estancia was walking home around 5 p.m. when a motorcycle rider stopped beside her and offered her a ride.
Letter to the mayor
The student, who didn’t recognize the rider, declined and hurried away. The incident occurred a few meters from the school.
Last Wednesday, two students were walking to the school around 6 a.m. when a van pulled over near them and a young man invited them inside.
Alarmed, the students ran.
The incidents were reported to the barangay hall and were raised by Department of Education (DepEd) Mandaue City Division Superintendent Virginia Zapanta during a meeting of the City Peace and Order Council last Friday.
DepEd Mandaue City Administrative Officer Benjamin Tiongzon said they sent Mayor Jonas Cortes a letter, requesting for police personnel to be detailed in the public schools during class hours.
“We don’t treat the incidents as alarming but we can’t be complacent. We have instructed the principals to tap the barangays in securing the students,” Tiongzon said in an interview.
In February 2011, six-year-old Ellah Joy Pique was walking home from school in Calajoan, Minglanilla, Cebu when a Filipina and a
Caucasian man lured her into their car.
The next day, the girl’s body was found dumped below a cliff in Barili town, wrapped in a bed sheet.
Tiongzon said they have directed all principals to instruct the students to wait for their parents after class dismissal or go home directly.
Earlier, the Mandaue City Central School sought the help of the police after hearing a threat that 100 students would be killed on March 7.
On that day, parents panicked after hearing reports that the pupils were being held hostage. The report, which was relayed to the police, turned out to be a hoax.
The school has implemented stricter security policies, like not allowing parents and strangers to enter the school, after the incident.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 17, 2013.