We send our children to school to learn and get education with the hope that they will graduate with a degree and with refined behavior. This is the dream of every parent and they work hard just to send their kids to school. However, even if our kids are obedient and they study hard, there are several factors that affect their learning and their interest to go to school, which eventually cause them to just drop out. Some of these problems persist and go unnoticed because kids often opt to keep their problems to themselves and not disclosing to parents, friends, and teachers because of fear that they might be judged or the situation may go worse.
One of the growing problems among students today that contribute to the reasons of growing number of drop outs, especially elementary and high school students is bullying. Stopbullying.gov defines it as “unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious, lasting problems.”
Bullying may happen verbally like teasing, name-calling, inappropriate sexual comments, threatening to cause harm, spreading rumors against someone, and physical abuse like hurting the person’s body or his or her possessions and this happens repeatedly over time leaving the victim debilitated. There had been reported cases where victims dropped out of school just to be freed from bullying and worst, they commit suicide.
Recently, parents of a high school student who committed suicide because of bullying went to Raffy Tulfo to seek his help to give justice to the death of their 16-year old son. They disclosed to Tulfo that they sought the help of the police, DepED, and the principal of the school where their son studied but after three months of waiting, no definite action was made which made them desperate and went to Tulfo as the last resort.
According to their interview with Tulfo, their son had experienced severe bullying by his classmates and two of his teachers. He did not talk to his parents and to anybody else about the bullying that happened to him in school but they discovered all the evidences like their son’s letter to his classmates and to his crush and his cellphone which he left with a password for his parents to access it and discover the video that was a clear evidence of bullying. From the evidences, it was revealed that one of his teachers was also guilty of bullying because the teacher looked down on him saying that he failed his subjects and was not qualified for the moving up ceremonies.
Tulfo called the principal of the school and DepEd Undersecretary Tom Umali for assistance and after few days when the victim’s parents went back to Umali’s office for updates, they were told that the aggressors are already on preventive suspension while the case is ongoing.
Bullying is still a serious problem in schools today. It is the responsibility of the school, teachers, parents, students, and everyone to be alert in recognizing the early signs of it so that it will be monitored properly. If you are being bullied, speak up and report the incidence to your teachers, the principal, parents, friends, or the police to get the matter properly investigated and put an end to it.