By Aaron Recuenco
Bullying incidents, particularly those involving minors and happened inside the campus, should be best addressed by school authorities first before any police action, a police official said.
Supt. Kimberly Molitas, deputy spokesperson of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said that even the Anti-Bullying Act of 2013 states that bullying incidents in the campus falls under the jurisdiction of school authorities who are expected to take the first action.
“I think we have to allow the independence of the school administration to do the process or do the initial investigation,” said Molitas.
She then urged school authorities to act swiftly on bullying cases to help the victim and impose sanctions and other remedies.
Molitas made the statement amid the viral video of an Ateneo junior high school student who was hitting some of his classmates. There were reportedly three videos showing the same student with different victims.
At the same time, Molitas also urged the parents to regularly talk with their children to check if they are being bullied. Most cases of bullying continue since the victims would not tell the schools and even their parents.
She said immediately reporting any case of bullying in the school must be done to enable school authorities take the necessary actions to address the problem.
“We, of course, encourage families, victims or children not to be afraid to report if they are bullied so that school administrators would be able to help them,” said Molitas.
But Molitas said the PNP is ready to assist in resolving bullying cases if the involved parties are not satisfied and would decide to seek police intervention.