DepEd to adjust reporting system for child abuse amid COVID-19 pandemic

Published September 22, 2020, 9:30 AM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

With students forced to stay at home when classes start this school year, the Department of Education (DepEd) is set to release an adjusted reporting mechanism for possible cases of child abuse.


DepEd Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Josephine Maribojoc, during this week’s “Handang Isip, Handa Bukas” virtual press conference, said that a supplementary policy has been drafted to strengthen the implementation of DepEd’s Child Protection Policy (CPP).

“Part of the supplemental policy on child protection is the reporting system,” Maribojoc said in a mix of English and Filipino. She explained that Annex will be included in the CPP supplementary policy showing a flow chart how the reporting will be done.

This, Maribojoc added, is very crucial especially if the report of “possible abuse occurred at home” or the abuse comes from the parents or other adults inside the house.

Maribojoc also underscored the importance of coordinating with the local government, especially the barangay or the council for the protection of children as well as the learning facilitators.

“They can do house visitations to see the circumstances of children in their homes,” she added.

Since children are out of school, Maribojoc said that the adjusted reporting system will enable them to report cases of possible abuse at home.

Maribojoc said that possible cases of child abuse will still have to be reported to the school and will be coursed to the child protection committee to ensure that there will be “interventions” in place. This, she added, is very important to make sure that the abused will not be prolonged or repeated.

To increase more awareness on these issues, Maribojoc said that DepEd has been conducting a series of initiatives focusing on child rights and child protection in education through various webinars.

Currently, Maribojoc noted that these webinars have reached over one million views. Aside from webinars, she said that there will be educational videos on child rights to be shown in DepEd TV. Materials on child rights and protection, she added, will also be printed and disseminated.