DAVAO CITY, Philippines – A community college in Davao de Oro expressed concern of their students’ safety in a government quarantine facility after receiving reports of lapses in protocol.
The Community Technical College of Southeastern Mindanao, Inc. (CTCSM), in a statement on Tuesday, said they received messages from the students in the local government facility in Nabunturan of instances of non-health personnel entering their facility.
Last May 16, the school turned over 35 students to the provincial task force to help facilitate their return to their respective provinces after being stranded due to border lockdowns because of Covid-19.
Under the guidelines of the national task force, individuals have to undergo a 14-day quarantine to obtain a certification of good health which they can present as they return to their respective hometowns.
But according to CTCSM teacher, Maria Cora Larobis, they received complaints from students since their first night in the facility center, which is an old fire department building.
“Our students question the quarantine facility’s state of sterility and isolation, as non-health personnel can just go in and out of the facility. On the first evening, two unidentified men got in through the back door of the girls’ room,” said Laroibs.
The teacher reported that health personnel managing the facility allowed a member of the Philippine Army’s 25th IB to enter after checking his temperature last Tuesday.
“The man started interrogating one Grade 9 student before other students noticed and questioned his presence. A member of the Provincial Social Welfare Office arrived, questioned his presence, and asked for his ID, after which he hurriedly left the facility after giving word he would be coming back to continue the interview,” Larobis said.
On May 19, PIATF personnel conducted an interview with the quarantined students “without social distancing” and that most of the questions were not related to COVID-19. Five days later, a “community mass” was held where an official of the province distributed gift packs.
CTCSM administrator Sophia Garduce called out the provincial government to ensure the health and welfare of its students.
“[We] turned over these children with the expectation that they will be well taken care of. We challenge Governor [Jayvee Tyron] Uy to ensure that they are safeguarded as he promised,” said Garduce.
Garduce also refuted the recent statement of the Department of Education-Davao de Oro that CTCSM held a summer class program amidst the no class policy under the enhanced community quarantine.
“The school did not continue to operate as a school, the scholars and staff were simply caught on lockdown together,” she said.
After March 16, more than 150 scholars, staff members, and teachers went home. However, few of them were forced to return to the campus after being denied to pass through Davao City.(davaotdoday.com)