Teachers’ ‘stores’ in classroom checked PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 14:17

The Department of Education (DepEd) is saddled with several problems in Zamboanga other than lack of classrooms.

The most recent is that of teachers converting part of their classrooms into “mini stores.”

For this school year, City Schools Division Superintendent Pedro Melchor Natividad said his first problem was with public elementary and secondary schools found operating canteens without sanitary permits from the city health office (CHO).

He said that of 171 public elementary school canteens checked by health personnel before the end of school year 2012-2013, only three elementary schools canteens were found to be issued with sanitary permits while 168 public school canteens were found to be operating under unsanitary conditions.

Health inspectors also found out that none of the canteens operated by the city’s 34 secondary public schools were operating with health permits.

Supt. Natividad’s second problem was the sale of junk food and softdrinks in public school canteens.

School cafeterias are supposed to provide nutritious food for their student-customers and he said the rule against the sale of junk food include vendors, who are actually banned, from selling just any foodstuff outside the school campus.

But Natividad on Monday came out publicly and officially with something else which was disturbing – some school teachers have turned or converted corners of their classrooms into “mini-stores” of their own - other than the canteen.

This practice making money by selling goods and foodstuff to their pupils by the teachers has been there for as long a one can remember.

This vary from the sale of the commonplace “ice candy” carried by teachers to school on ice chests, to the sale of packed food like crackers, candies and even school supplies – at higher prices than those sold in stores.

School administrators turn a blind eye as some teachers reason out that this practice reduces the number of their students going out of their classrooms and protecting them from possible harm.

This practice of teachers operating their own “mini stores” inside their classrooms distract actual classroom work. Teachers attend to the sale or assign pupils as volunteer to do the job.

Supt. Natividad has warned that should teachers fail to stop operating mini stores in their own classrooms, he will be “forced to penalize or discipline them.” — LS