MANILA, Philippines – Now it’s St Theresa’s College’s turn to sue.
The Catholic school based in Cebu filed criminal charges against the parents of 3 of its high school students barred from their graduation ceremonies over photos of them in bikinis.
Sun.Star Cebu reported Wednesday, April 2 that the STC filed the case to “affirm their parental responsibility” in helping the school develop the students.
“The school and the parents have the same goal — that of forming the child to become a whole, mature, happy and fulfilled individual who will live responsibly in society to which she belongs and is called to serve,” Sun.Star quoted a statement from the school, released by lawyers Bernadito Florido and Joan Largo.
According to the school’s complaint, the parents violated the Anti-Child Abuse Law for failure to supervise their children, resulting in them doing “vices” and “immoral acts,” referring to the photos of the students wearing bikinis.
The complaint was signed by Sr. Purisima Pe, STC director; Musollini Yap, assistant high school principal; and private citizens Salome Lape, Maria Teresa Atienza, and Jo-ann Zaldumbide, the Philippine Daily Inquirer reported.
“Lest we regress to a culture of juvenile delinquency and errant behavior, the parents and the school need to consciously and constantly take to heart their respective responsibilities,” the statement added.
“As Christians, we are always ready and willing to reconcile and forgive. But in the same way that we affirm the Christian teachings of forgiveness and reconciliation, we also uphold the primordial requirement of parental responsibility,” the lawyers were quoted by Sun.Star Cebu as saying.
This is the latest twist in the case stemming from the “bikini photos” issue, where several STC students were barred by the school from attending their graduation ceremonies after the school found photos of them on Facebook wearing bikinis in a private event.
A Cebu City judge first issued a temporary restraining order that would have allowed the students to march in their graduation ceremonies, but the school defied it, saying it was “deficient.”
The parents earlier sued the school for damages stemming from the issue, which earned the Catholic institution flak online and offline. – Rappler.com
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