[Updated] Some graduating criminology students of Western Philippines University (WPU) who received failing grades from their two subject teachers are pleading with university officials to give them a chance to pass so they can begin their internship.
A student, one of an estimated 54, who requested anonymity, alleged that two subject teachers for Dispute Resolution in Crisis for the 2nd Semester of 2021-2022 and Therapeutic Modalities for the 1st Semester of 2022-2023 at the WPU Puerto Princesa City Campus gave them failing marks for being unable to attend online classes, particularly during the peak of COVID-19.
She told Palawan News they had received grades of 5, which would make it impossible for them to continue as on-the-job trainees.
“Mag aapila po sana sa guro po ng WPU PPC Campus, meron po kasi kaming guro na binagsak po ang karamihan samin na dahilan para hindi po kami makapag ojt. Graduating po kami at kailangan po namin maka ojt para maka graduate pero hindi po kami makaka ojt sa kadahilanang failed po ang iilang subjects namin [sic],” the student said in a private message to Palawan News on Monday.
“Base po kasi sa pag kakaalam namin noong kasagsagan po ng Covid since online class po yun hindi po pwede mag bagsak ang mga guro dahil sa pandemya hindi po naming kasalanan mga studyante na nag karoon ng virus na magiging dahilan ng wlang face to face class at dahil po online class karamihan po samin walang internet access lalo’t na sa mga malalayo pong probinsya ang tahanan. at walang sapat na pera pang load o pang bili ng mga gagamitin sa online class [sic],” added the student.
According to the student, one of the subject teachers dropped some without notifying them. They only discovered this information in the university’s student access module.
She said that the students were told that if they want to graduate, they have to retake the subject next year when it opens again.
“Para po sa mga aminadong kulang at hindi nakagawa sa kanya ng activity, quizes at iba pa tinanggap napo nila na babalikan nila ang subject na iyon pero po nung nang face to face na po this 2022 nag taka po ang lahat ng studyante na failed parin po ang grades sa nasabing guro [sic],” the student claimed.
“Kumpleto po ang lahat ng activity, pasok sa school, exam at quiz, para sa ilang studyante tanggap na nila ang 3s sana na grado subalit binigyan ito ng 5 (singko) which means kelangang balikan ang subject [sic],” added the student.
She also stated that the subject teachers make it difficult for students to discuss their problems with them because they are “busy.”
One teacher will plan to meet with students, but cancel at the last minute, leaving their concerns unresolved.
The student stated that they simply want to know if these acts are in accordance with university regulations.
“Mag se set po ng araw kung kelan balak papuntahin ang mga studyante at pag nandoon na po kami sasabihin na busy daw po siya at sa ibang araw nalang daw po. Pero ngayon pong pasahan na ng mga grades sila papo ang galit at sasabihin na hindi raw po kami nag papakita at nakikiusap sa kanya [sic],” the student added.
“Gusto lang po sana namin malaman kung tama pa po ba ang mga patakaran po ng eskwelahan. Gayunpaman nag papasalamat pa din po kami sa public school dahil libre ang aming tuition chansa namin upang makapag aral pero ang hindi po namin maintaindihan kung bakit po ganyan pahirapan po para samin ang ipa graduate’ [sic],” the student said.
In response to a call by Palawan News, Dean Maphilindo Lao of the WPU College of Criminal Justice Education said the advice is for the students concerned to write a letter to Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Ma. Lourdes Marzo “to manifest their complaints.”
Lao noted that when he asked one of the teachers, he was informed that the subjects he is currently teaching are for third-year students.
“Ito ang paraan to resolve this in an objective manner, para magkaroon rin kami ng basis to take action at mabigyang linaw ang lahat,” he said.
“Malamang yong mga nagsasabi ay binabalikan nila yong subject, pero technically, wala siyang subject na hinahandle sa fourth year,” Lao added.
Their claims and concerns differ, according to Lao, so it would be beneficial if they write to Dr. Marzo so that their particular situations could be evaluated and addressed according to university policies.
He explained that although the university had implemented a policy on admission and retention in order to adapt to the COVID-19 situation, the students should not be under the impression that no one would fail because of this.
“Iba-iba kasi ang claim nila kaya mahirap i-generalize, pero on the part of the school—this school adjusted accordingly doon sa COVID—understanding the situation ng mga bata,” Lao said.
“Yong admission and retention policy na-freeze muna, wala munang implementation noon, ay nagkaroon sila ng connotation na walang babagsak. Pero nag-offer kasi ng iba ibang modalities—kung di kaya ng internet, at walang access, merong hard copies naman ng module na puwede nilang kunin sa school,” he added.
In the absence of everything, Lao stated, the university gave the students two years to make up for their interrupted studies caused by the pandemic.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Dean Maphilindo Lao’s name was incorrectly misspelled and has been corrected in this article.