DepEd statement on incidents of rape involving students

March 28, 2017

The Department of Education (DepEd), the foremost government agency mandated to promote and protect the welfare of young learners, appeals to the community to be increasingly vigilant and proactive in preventing and deterring incidents that result in the abuse, exploitation, and discrimination against children.
 
This is in view of the reported incidents of rape involving a 12-year-old student and her five schoolmates in Barangay Maysilo, Malabon; a Grade 10 student and five minors in Sta. Maria, Bulacan; and an 11-year-old student and four schoolmates in Ajuy, Iloilo. Through the legal office of the respective Schools Division Offices, DepEd is gathering further information to assess the necessary actions to ensure that justice is served and rehabilitation is enforced.
 
Learners spend more or less nine hours in class, but the bigger percentage of their daily interactions and values formation occur outside school. The teachers’ commitment to instilling in children the proper values and respect for fellow people must be complemented by the guidance of parents and guardians, and by the responsibility of media and of the community.
 
These are young, pliant minds – eager to learn and absorb information, beliefs, values, perspectives, ideas. The burden of accountability and the necessity to ensure that they develop into upright and productive citizens, lie equally on the shoulders of the education system, the government, and the community.
 
The Department firmly upholds the protection for children by the State through the Republic Act No. 7610, or An Act Providing for Stronger Deterrence and Special Protection against Child Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination, and for Other Purposes, and is committed to providing a safe and nurturing environment where the values of respect, gender-sensitivity, and responsibility for one’s actions are learned, understood, and applied.
 
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