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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Bikinis and Graduation

St. Therese College of Cebu has been too hasty in imposing punishment on five of their female students who posted on Facebook pictures showing themselves in their bikinis, with liquor and cigarettes on the side. The school sure knows how to punish where it hurts the most: a ban for all five from attending the school graduation rites.

I would love to see the STC's school handbook where it prohibits its students from "posing and uploading pictures on the Internet that entail bodily exposure."

STC claims the "girls were still allowed to graduate. They were not expelled. The only penalty imposed was the prohibition from joining the graduation ceremonies."

Does the school handbook have "prohibition from joining graduation ceremonies" as part of its sanction list? Is this the girls's first time to commit this offense? Second time? Third time? What I remember about school policies is that offenses are sort into categories of being minor, quasi-major, and major offenses. And each category has levels of sanctions. For minor offense, a first time offender may be given a verbal warning; second offense written warning. For major offenses, the highest sanction can be expulsion. So I ask, is "posing and uploading pictures on the Internet..." a major offense, that STC is so proud to announce that the students were not considered for expulsion. This as if the school has delivered their most merciful act.

And how can you expel students when they have most certainly completed their academic requirements to be considered for graduation? They cannot expel them either. The school is almost over.

STC punished them where it most hurt. What could be worse than being banned from attending your High School graduation? Never mind college. But high school?

The students might have offended the school and its ideals, but is it too hard to embrace those who did wrong and while you say you love them, lead them to the right path?

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