22 February 2006


Teachers vs. teachers in Sn. Jacinto

SAN JACINTO – Beleaguered Principal Alfredo S. Calugay of the national high school here has received full support from some 39 teachers and employees who signed a manifesto declaring that the complaints earlier raised against him were “blatant lies and mere speculations.”

In their manifesto dated January 19, his supporters who belong to the Teachers and Employees Association (TEA) of the SJNHS vouched for his “commitment, integrity, honesty and dedication to his job,” contrary to claims by protesting teachers that Calugay was dishonest, corrupt, undedicated, and oppressive.

Some 20 teachers and employees of the school in December filed an administrative case against Calugay with the regional office for alleged irregularities to include demands for money from new teachers.

The case is still pending investigation by the department’s legal division.

The principal, it was learned, is also facing a separate administrative complaint for grave misconduct filed by some 53 teachers of the Benigno Aldana National High School in Pozorrubio, where he was formerly assigned. Calugay replaced early last year Principal Mary Lynne Bautista who herself was forced to leave because of protests.

TEA officers led by Junilla Perez denied the charges saying that Calugay was responsible for bringing back what they described as “stress-free environment.”

The group identified the instigators as head teachers Francisco Torres, Redentor Aquino, and Marilou Mangapot, whom they claimed to be “fierce supporters” of Bautista.

“They were the ones who fabricated lies to defend her (Bautista) from all the accusations we have raised against her. Now, they are again fabricating lies and inventing half-truths, which are worse than lies, this time to make it appear that these complainants are the oppressed and Dr. Calugay is the oppressor,” they said in their manifesto.

They added that the three head teachers committed several cases of insubordination and were bent on discrediting the principal.

They also claimed that Calugay tried to mediate with the two factions and unite them but the complainants, they said, had another agenda in mind laying out a plan to boot him out from the very beginning.

Disproving claims that Calugay demanded money from some four new teachers, head teachers Zoraida Calpito and Remedios Condes and Mapeh OIC Bella Tucay said in their affidavit that they received no instruction from the principal to solicit money from the new teachers.

They also said that claims by Ritchell Cobella, Elsa Quiros, Minerva Mejia, and Ramon Abaoag that he had demanded money from them were false and fabricated and merely based on hearsay.

New teachers Rean Velasco and Jacqueline Galvez, in their separate affidavit, said the principal “did not ask any gift or remuneration from us in return for our teaching positions at SJNHS,” and that “he never instructed us to give gifts or money to any division personnel.’

Several parents expressed dismay at the state of things in the high school, saying that the situation shows how greatly divided the teaching personnel in that high school are to the detriment of the school and its students. (DOS)
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