Sara Duterte

Sara Duterte on viral video of irate teacher: She’s just human, no penalties for her

Bonz Magsambol

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Sara Duterte on viral video of irate teacher: She’s just human, no penalties for her

SARA DUTERTE. Vice President Sara Duterte resigned as education secretary on June 19, 2024.

Inday Sara Duterte Facebook page

Vice President Sara Duterte, who once punched a court sheriff, advises teachers to pause in class when they are angry

MANILA, Philippines – Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte, who once punched a court sheriff in a fit of rage when she was mayor of Davao City, advised teachers on Thursday, March 21, to pause when they are about to lose their cool while conducting their classes.

The Vice President made the statement when asked about her reaction to a viral video of a teacher berating her students live on TikTok.

“Ang una kong naging reaksiyon ay tao lang ‘yung teacher. Lahat tayo umaabot sa punto na nagagalit tayo lalo kapag na fru-frustrate tayo,” Duterte told reporters in an ambush interview in Cambodia.

(My first reaction was – the teacher is just a human. We all reach a point where we get angry especially when we’e frustrated.)

She said no penalties were imposed on the teacher, but added that she would be reprimanded by her regional director.

“I saw her explanation. And then, I instructed the regional office that there will be no penalties for the teacher. Just to remind the teacher, if she’s angry, she has to pause. Pause the class. If she’s not angry anymore, she can resume the class. There’s a need to pause, if the teacher is angry,” Duterte said in a mix of English and Filipino.

Duterte’s Zen-like advice was a stark contrast to her throwing a tantrum and punching a Davao Regional Trial Court sheriff during a demolition of houses over a decade ago in Davao City when she was mayor.

The Department of Education (DepEd) said on Monday, March 18, it issued a show cause order to the erring teacher.

According to DepEd order No. 40 series of 2012, child abuse in schools includes an “act by deeds or words which debases, degrades or demeans the intrinsic worth and dignity of a child as a human being.”

The Vice President said that teachers are trained for psychosocial support. Students who felt anxious and stressed about the incident will undergo debriefing sessions.

The DepEd has identified bullying as one of the reasons for the prevailing learning crisis and one of the factors why the Philippines performed poorly in global education assessment. –

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Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol covers the Philippine Senate for Rappler.