VICTIM OF ABUSE. Jonathan Ramos recalls physical and verbal abuse from his grade school teacher. Photo by Fritz Rodriguez. MANILA, Philippines – Jonathan Ramos, a 19-year-old college exchange student in South Korea, has vivid memories of his terror teacher in grade school. A Public Administration student at the University of the Philippines-Diliman, he recalls how as a Grade 3 pupil he and his classmates were subjected to their teacher’s verbal abuse. “Every day she cursed us. That’s how I learned to curse. Good thing, I don’t do that anymore.” Everyone in his class, mostly 9-year-olds, had a bad experience with her. “One time, we were cleaning our classroom; she said we are not allowed to talk while we’re arranging the chairs. So I just mouthed what I wanted to say to my classmate. She saw me and asked me to come to her, and then she slapped me with her plastic slipper.” He didn’t report the abuse. “I didn’t know that it was abuse at that time…We thought that it was just the norm inside the class. She was our teacher in all subjects, so we didn’t know how other Grade 3 teachers treated students.” John Joshua, 15, experienced bullying from older students who threatened him and extorted money from him when he was in Grade 3. Redmon, also 15, experienced physical abuse from his elementary classmates who pulled his hair and teased him. Even Education Secretary Armin Luistro said that when he was in kindergarten, an irate music teacher approached him when she saw him chatting with his classmates. His teacher put a scotch tape on his lips.
Luistro said that a simple act of abuse like this can negatively affect a child’s behavior. “It was an experience which, in the eyes of an adult, seems petty. But if you put yourselves in that situation, in the shoes of that student, the impact would be different,” he said. Violence in school
According to a 2009 report of PLAN Philippines, a children’s organization, at least 5 out of 10 Filipino children in grades 1-3, 7 out of...
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