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Antipolo pupil dies 2 weeks after ‘slapping’

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A Grade 5 student in Antipolo, Rizal has died, around two weeks after he was allegedly slapped by his teacher, the Department of Education division office in the city said Tuesday.

The student, Francis Jay Dumikib, succumbed to a brain hemorrhage on Monday afternoon, 11 days after being hospitalized, his family said.

“DepEd Antipolo is taking appropriate actions to address the alleged child abuse incident in Peñafrancia Elementary School, Antipolo City,” the department said in a statement yesterday.

“We have already forwarded the required Intake Sheet, Incident Report, and Narrative Report to the Office of the Regional Director, DepEd Region IV-A CALABARZON, for information and appropriate action,” it added.

Police are investigating the incident, while the Dumikib family was waiting for the results of an autopsy to confirm the cause of death, television reports said last night.

The DepEd will also form a fact-finding committee to oversee the investigation, lawyer Kelvin Matib of the Antipolo Schools Division Office told mediamen.

The teacher, whose name was withheld and is now on indefinite leave, is facing a possible homicide charge and a violation of Republic Act 7610 or the Anti-Child Abuse Law, apart from administrative charges.

Francis Jay felt an earache after he was slapped on Sept. 21, his mother Elena told TV reporters. He lost his balance, vomited, and was taken to hospital on Sept. 26. Her son had gone three straight days to school after the alleged incident, she added.

“My son told me about it repeatedly. He would not have done so if he wasn’t hurt,” Elena said.

She went to the school the next day but only talked to Francis Jay’s class adviser, not the teacher who slapped him, she added.

The student’s family is appealing to Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte-Carpio to give their son justice and to aid in paying their hospital bill and the child’s wake.

DepEd Antipolo has formed a team of “selected Registered Guidance Counselors, School Health Nutrition Unit (SHNU) Representatives, Youth Formation Development (YFD) Coordinators, EPS in Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao, Child Protection Specialist, and Focal Person,” its statement said.

They would assist with possible interventions like reorientation of the Child Protection Policy of all concerned stakeholders, and debriefing of concerned learners and teachers.

“We are saddened by the death of our dear learner and we express our deepest condolences and prayers to the bereaved family. Rest assured that the Department recognizes the best interests of our learners as a primordial consideration,” it said.


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