Challenge for the Dignified Teachers

May I pour my thoughts about the teachers I recently met these days? Teachers had always been good influencers and I can never forget the greatest of the teachers I had back then. Mrs. Sonia Bruan-Santiago (THE IV), , Mrs. Luzviminda Miguel (VE VI), Mrs. Juanita Lagmay(Gr6), Mrs. Andaya (THE I), Mr. Nestor Londerio (Physics IV HS), Mrs. Minerva Ranieses (Eng. Prof.), Mrs. Helen Bulatao (Dean /Acctg. Prof., Mrs. Remedios Ala (Gr3 Eng.), Dr. Regino Paular (Current Issues). 

These are not so good things that are needed to be said to challenge the teachers of our new generation.  It will be up to them to take this negatively or positively to improve themselves and abhor such deeds mentioned here.

The Quiz Bee Cheat-chers?!

Contrary to what others might suppose on my divulging of this hateful fact, I wanted to help ignite back the integrity of SOME of our noble teachers. I do not have any idea if whether winning on quiz bees give them, teachers, extra points or promotion because SOME but NOT ALL are staking their pride and honor just to help their coached students WIN.

This is what I have observed in the recently concluded Quiz Bee my daughters  had participated in:
1. A teacher coached a  student (maybe on the same school she is in –because not only now I met the student and teacher tandem, they represent Science V last year and they obviously cheated then too but landed only 3rd). You know why, because I recorded the whole competition on video and they found it difficult to signal.

The student always glance on that teacher before she answers, the Easy and Average levels are to be answered with letter of choice ONLY which is 20 points when totaled if I am not mistaken. The wise teacher, pulled her chair back to where my camera can not caught her and she just moved her chair when the two rounds are finished because dictating or signaling complete words on the difficult round is not easy that is why she stopped there.  I noticed that she only helps in the first two rounds. Glad that they were not able to make it to the top2 then.

This year, the tandem have succeeded, the student ranked 1st this time, it so happened that my digicam is not prepared – low battery and I left the memory card for longer recording time, there is no way I can video them.  The teacher sat just one seat apart from that same student last year. Now, she whispered every letter of the correct answer, I was able to read her lips when it opens – it will be too many to call it coincidence. The wise teacher noticed that I was staring at her and the student with a long hair – glancing all the time to her or listens to her every dictation. I only learned she is the TIMER when she softly uttered ‘STOP’ that is just when she felt I was guarding her. What she did is whispering while pretending to look at her phone or writing on a piece of paper – I do not know if she is also writing every letter of the answer. But mouthing letters a, b or c or the word stop moves one’s lips differently that is why I am precisely sure she is dictating answers and you really would not notice she is timing the Quiz at first because she only started talking a little louder when she noticed me. I knew almost all the answers because it took me huge time writing the Science reviewer for my child aside from what her teacher has provided. I just thought before that she is just there to observe the competition but…imagine one seat apart from the student, she is facing the door while seating on the last column.  The student sat in the column before her, facing the blackboard. The distance is only the narrow aisle that is approximately one seat away. Imagine 14points out of total score that brought her in the advantage of around 6-8pts from the 2nd placer is obtained from cheating! I felt sad to the 2nd and 3rd placer who have exhausted efforts on reviewing just to be cheated, it so happened that my daughter’s score this time is far from winning, I chose to keep silent.  I thanked the situation because if not, I would not keep my mouth shut and expose the cheater oh, I mean teacher and the pretending-to-be winner student.  How can they managed to accept medal without honor at all, they knew for themselves that it does not belong to them.  That is why I could not help mentioning to the other spectators that the 2nd and 3rd placer are more deserving of the medals.

This became so rampant that Angel became a victim too last year on a different district here in Quezon province.

1. The students were asked to share a number of questions representing their respective schools English IV, I forgot if it is one or two questions each.

2. The Quiz Master seated at the back of the seat rows doing her thing while maybe an ‘intern’ or assistant (not wearing uniform) asked everyone to put their share of question in the box in front of the blackboard. Each question has the answer provided to guide the Quiz Master.

3. The Quiz Master still seated at the back, reminded everyone with a loud voice the number of questions each should submit – a student stood up and uttered she has submitted questions one more than is required! The QM’s assistant asked the student to find her questions among  those questions in the box submitted from all the schools to compete in the district.

4. The maybe STUPID assistant asked the student to come in front and look for her submitted questionnaires and get it back. The student almost read five questions and still not finding hers,  I was staring at them and can not help stopping the student – I told the assistant that the student is already VIOLATING fairness by reading each of the questionnaire from other schools (with answers therein) just to find hers!

The assistant even retorted  when I entered to complain that NOTHING was read, BUT HOW CAN THE STUDENT KNOW WHAT IS HERS IF SHE IS JUST MERELY LOOKING AT THE PAPER when she is really reading each one by one as all the other contestants in the room are innocently looking while I, being a mother (by the window) can not let this pass. 

5. The Quiz Master went enraged and asked all of us parents to stay away from the window and even rudely closing all the windows in the quiz area, I just reported the issue to the teacher from our school.

 I will not forget that rumored former Beauty Queen spinster teacher from Cal---- District School. Oh, my! After the Quiz, we standby longer than usual in the room. The student’s (who dared to CHEAT) mother came to the Quiz Master – the student is her CURRENT STUDENT because the mother is asking about a project her daughter needs to submit. How can I be sure? The student went near her mom while embracing her arms! See! That is why the Quiz Master stayed deaf from my complaint and even secluded the room (all windows and door closed) till the Quiz is finished – annoyed from my unexpected intervention.

Anyway, one of the teachers from our school went inside. Glad that my daughter still brought home the Gold Medal from Monograde EnglishIV competition and just landed silver on the Multigrade Level. They did not even awarded the Gold medal for the Monograde competition to my child saying they ran out of it. Tsk, The teacher even started the Quiz on time and almost on the Difficult Round when a coach and student arrived, complaining that the Quiz should have not been started earlier because they knew its 1pm – so the session became void! Okay I have to keep my mouth shut even my child is leading – that maybe fair enough to accept. But the Quiz Master should know WHAT SHE IS SUPPOSED TO DO as well as her LIMITATIONS.

Our home school just provided the medal to my child on Recognition Day. Why is there someone like that teacher who is never conscientious of what she is doing?! This does not only being unfair to the children who diligently reviewed for weeks or late nights and the parents like me who is very supportive of my child, modesty aside. The GREATER damage is to their REPUTATATION as teachers – teachers who are supposed to exhibit exemplary attitude and character aside from teaching academic lessons and the psychological and emotional trauma such incidents are bringing to children must be weighed-in for consideration. Is that the price they had to pay for winning fraudulently?

I hope that the dignified teachers will continue to uphold the HONOR and GOOD REPUTATION attributed to the calling of their profession and will look for ways to make every inter-school competition for students CREDIBLE and WORTHY enough to spend time for by every student or teacher-coach coming even from the remotest Barangay in every district excited to engage in the Battle of the Brains that in truth became Battle of the Wise Cheat-chers.

The Quiz which my younger daughter won second, I caught the teacher standing before a student inside the Quiz Room, I knew the answer is ‘La Estudyantina’ I read her mouth uttering such. I let it pass, that student and my child reached the clincher round because of a TIE SCORE, I caught her uttering ‘Tubbataha Reef’ too when I objected, she denied dictating answers so I asked her what is she whispering the student she just told me she is just reminding her that it is ‘pabilisan’ (Take NOTE, she did not deny that she is whispering!)far from Tubbataha Reef she is  mouthing  - I may accept if she may insist that SHE IS JUST READING THE ANSWER on the child’s answer board because I was staring at her not on my daughter.Then she immediately say, the student is finished and she won the Quiz even my daughter got the same correct answer alone by herself without dictation from anyone! My daughter landed second.

They did even disqualify ‘Hazard Maps my child has written instead of ‘Hazard Map’ I reminded her coach to tell the Quiz Master that there are different kinds of Hazard Maps (Landslide Prone Area Map/Flood Hazard Map/Fault Line Map) mentioned on the reference book but still the Quiz Master and the assisting teachers in the room REFUSED to accept it. Tsk where is the committee on that subject that supposed to decide on the matter? I just kept quiet but exploded on the dictation matter. The teacher said that the child is not her student – hers is higher level, what more can I say?! I forgot to ask how about if they represent the same school or whatever reason she has to be biased that I am not really aware of?! She is that supportive standing at the back of her chair clinging to it, that near! Is there not any TECHNICAL VIOLATION on that?!

The last Quiz Bee my younger daughter attended is MAYBE honest except for the doubtful DISQUALIFICATION of the Quiz Master ALONE of three questions (never consulting or telling the quizzers or co-observer teachers inside )WHY the questions are not read and accepted- she read them ALONE and set them aside). I really wonder when even the exact height of a certain falls in meters has even passed her scrutiny and accepted as a question – that not so important matter at all! In fairness to her, everything that can be read from the reference book may be asked – I just wonder what is with the three questions she eliminated?! Maybe not reviewed by her student?! She even uttered ‘this is my question’ when she picked another while smiling.

Another style, I noticed last year is regulating the size (bond paper maybe 1/8 crosswise rectangular long) of the questionnaire but this school submitted a different size (larger and square), from the host school.  And I heard the coach teacher knocked the table when she put the questions inside the Difficult Box – she is the last to submit too. That meant she put the questions at the bottom MAYBE to surely PICK it – I am not sure if there is connivance happening because I always hear this conviction that it is an insult to be defeated by schools from the barrios. To be fair, I have to say the Quiz Master is NOT that coach but they belong to the same school. Understanding it scientifically, there is no way she can knock the table when she was the last to put questions on the pile of paper questionnaires from different schools (more than 12 competing with two each for every category if I am not mistaken). I became a keen observer after the bad experience before it.
I sometimes lose excitement of letting my children join Quiz Bees if things like those happen. I might choose to save their effort (and mine too- I honestly and fully support my children on reviewing) from WASTING TIME on UNFAIR competition. It is but quite easy to accept loss from inadequate reviewing efforts BUT from cheating is FAR MORE a different thing.

I can not forget this male teacher in a District School, he displays attitude that is more than required of him.  I saw his two female students drinking softdrinks while clinging to his side (with their bodies-torso) and embracing his arms while walking the school’s aisle. I surmise that in a school like it (where I saw children walking barefoot or just wearing slippers and donning wrinkled uniforms matched with their worn-out bags), forgive me if I am thinking that the ‘softdrinks’ might be a treat from the teacher. I am not insinuating that it is purely the fault of the teacher that created that situation.  The students are tempting the teacher to abuse them. I really do not know what more could there be inside the classroom when there maybe chances they will be left alone, I can not help but imagine the worst! It will still be up to him to CONTROL the situation. Anyway, he knows what is RIGHT than these children do.
And a friend told me that her daughter is telling her that whenever they were not able to do their assignments on that same teacher I mentioned above, they are humiliated in front of the class thru pulling their skirt and pants – I almost can not believe it but I refused to meddle because my children are not directly involved in it. This needs to be said for the DepEd to keep on reminding the CONSEQUENCES of such CONDUCT UNBECOMING OF A PUBLIC SERVANT especially supposed-to-be ROLE MODEL teachers.

A teacher should always keep in mind that HUMILIATION has long term effect on children – their self-esteem, sociality and their molding into better citizens without negative perception of the society.

Once, my eldest child has studied from a District School wherein the actual Achievement Tests for their  grade level are reviewed. The school will surely get HIGH passing rate and an ultimately high TOP SCORE, because the only reason the student might not able to answer the exam is that he forgets the answer from the review, although they are SURE not given answer’s key to copy from. Reviewing the same questions given on the actual test, oh my! Is it not a qualified CHEATING?

Learning that it is possible, I lose my complete admiration for schools that get higher ratings on the Achievement Test, again from experience I can not help but think they MIGHT have done the same. How can we gauge the effectiveness of the educators nor the real achievement of the students that way?! The students must answer the questionnaires based on their learning – if ‘there is retention, if the teachers have performed well in doing their duties of teaching each and every lesson? Is there any HONEST ASSESSMENT in that way?! I know this is hard to regulate on the part of the DepEd, the integrity of it LIES IN THE HANDS of the school administrators and the teachers themselves.

Teachers GUILTY of those CONDUCT UNBECOMING may be ENRAGED to read themselves written here but those who are NOT GUILTY  may be INSPIRED and PROUD TO SAY, they do not belong to these rotten tomatoes.

May the teachers of this generation TAKE THE CHALLENGE of continuously setting good example to the youth of the future generation. I do hope that the ROTTEN TOMATOES on the shelf be rapidly eliminated before they can contaminate the roster of the RESPECTABLE educators.

Comments will be deeply appreciated.  Have a great day ahead!
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Family, Daily Living & Style by Angelita Galiza-Madera is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.