IT WAS a surprise to us when we read on social media on Wednesday that a university professor at the Ateneo de Davao University was threatened by a parent whose child received a failing grade.
Posts on social media claimed that the parent allegedly threatened the professor with a gun. However, based on our fact finding and news gathering no gun was actually involved in the incident.
However, the parent did bring personal bodyguards and even said grave claims against the teacher and the school. Worse, the parent is a high-ranking government official.
While it can be noted that this is an unforgivable act by a public official, the incident also highlighted a growing problem in the society and education sector -- parents threatening teachers for failing their children.
Parents, in general, must understand that the student must meet a certain set of requirements to be able to pass the subject.
We may not know how the student performs in class. A failing grade though means that the student did not meet the standards and expectations of the teacher.
Parents must also understand that a student must be present during classes, work hard to study and pass all quizzes and exams and submit all requirements at a designated time, otherwise the worse will become of him.
Dear parents, the student is graded by how he or she performs in his or her subjects. It should not be a practice among parents to beg or threaten teachers to pass their erring children when clearly they perform below par.
Allow them to fail and learn from it. Once they leave school to start working, the failures they may experience would be harder than a failing grade.
Another issue at hand is how the public official used his influence and position to threaten the professor. While the government is working hard to weed out erring officials, we have one here in Davao who could not even care less about the warnings of the government to not abuse their power.
The public official even had the audacity to threaten to bring the school down.
What the official did was clearly an act of power tripping, an act that is unacceptable upon and an act of someone who should not be holding a high ranking position.
A public official should act as a public servant. A public official may be a parent but that does not give him or her any license to threaten anyone, lest a hardworking teacher who is just doing a job, for failing his or her child. For a public official to be doing such, regardless if he or she is a parent, is uncalled for and a sheer embarrassment to the office he or she is representing.
Parents and students, too, must understand that how one handles a failure now will determine her or his future. Failures are there to teach us lessons of a lifetime. And the best way to handle a failure? Just man up! Take responsibility, strive to get back up and do not repeat the same mistake ever again.