Deaths in Schools: Suicides and Plagiarism

One of the saddest things in my adventures as a teacher is when a student dies. It is exceptionally so when the student committed suicide.

In my first year in teaching for a big American International School near Manila, a Korean student decided to end his young life. He was 16. He flunked his algebra exam, and he didn’t have family in the Philippines.

Last Saturday, my mother messaged me about an 18 year old student from a famed British school in Manila who ended his own life. Couldn’t care less to be honest, at the back of my head, Filipinos who go to that school are spoiled, rich, often from a political family or a showbiz family. But one of my good friends came to work there, and I even tried to work there, I can only say that that school is top tier, top notch and very respectable.

The kid allegedly jumped from a carpark building in Salcedo Village in Makati (where my boyfriend used to live, so quite familiar with the area!), and to his death. His family comes from a posh village a stone’s throw away, and when I was researching for it, learned that their family is my aunt’s neighbor in Makati (also very familiar with that area), and one article even said that the Barangay Council vouched for the student’s intelligence. My aunt is chairman of the council. How very familiar indeed.

Suicides come and go. Depression is bound to hit you at some point or another and if you can’t handle it, well, it makes to wanna jump towards your demise.That’s how I look at it. Some people, take a different spin on it, like blaming the teacher of the kid for his suicide. Like whaaaaat?

The parents say that they will acquire a hold departure order for the student’s British teacher as she reprimanded the kid for plagiarizing his writing assignment, and that was, according to them, is what made the kid’s fuse blow.

That is in no way right. First of all, plagiarism is WRONG. Full stop. It’s stealing. I understand where the kid is coming from, we were all at that one point in our lives where deadline is imminent and you can’t rephrase a damn paragraph, but is it my fault if you waited for the deadline? How come other students did it too? As a teacher, I’d  reprimand him too. I want my student’s to have integrity!

If the kid was smart as they say he is, then I’m pretty sure he’s cool about it, he knew what he was doing, as after all, he’s smart. Unless he was on drugs, which can make his behavior go bonkers. Then again, he can be just plain depressed and that made him bonkers. Why does the depression have to be blamed on the teacher though? Can he not have other problems?

I will quote the mother on this “Dapat sabihin kaagad ng school ang nangyari para masuportahan sa bahay o dapat nadoon kami sa meeting na ‘yon (We should have been told immediately what happened so we could support him at home or we should have been in the meeting [with the teacher]),”  (source) and I go, whut. He’s 18. He’s an adult. Being a Filipino though, 18 can still be pretty kiddie and the British teacher MAY have not realized that the student isn’t mature enough to take a very sensitive, intellectually-blowing reprimand (but mature enough to plagiarize – ha!), but yeah, understand it when the parents go, he’s still a kid. Maturity is relative after all.

It’s good that the school hasn’t issued a statement over this as it’s just, sorry – stupid. I am tempted to say sorry that I wasted your time on this but to tell the truth, we can all learn from this: quit plagiarizing, claim your mistakes, be kind to everyone. We all have our shit. Let’s all be giving.

Sources and Related Articles:

Family of fallen BSM student mulls charges vs teacher

British school student jumps to death in Makati

Troubled student jumps off Makati carpark building

Advertisements

8 thoughts on “Deaths in Schools: Suicides and Plagiarism

  1. “How come other student’s did it too?” I quote you. Well, that is just one of the false perceptions teachers have. They tend to compare anyone with someone. When I read your post, I only have one thing in mind… and that is… YOU ARE BEING SO JUDGMENTAL. You don’t even have respect to the dead and to his family. Your side comments are plain awful. Your post clearly depicted how unprofessional you are. You are thinking, how come other students were able to finish the paper without plagiarizing while the guy who committed suicide, whom people claim to be nice and excellent, plagiarized? Students are all people but they are never the same. Your question can be viewed also as, “How come the squirrel successfully climbed that tree but the rabbit failed?” It is also clear in your post that you are really annoyed to the dead guy because of him plagiarizing one paper. AND it is also clear that you are not someone who cares for others. You are selfish and self-centered. The argument you posted about him being 18 and still being taken cared of by his parents is stupid. No matter how old your child is, if you are a parent, you will still guide your child. LIKE DUH?! (ok. sorry. but i really find your “like whuts” and all those crazy shits… PUTANGINA) Ok. I’m done.

    Like

    1. Dear Anonymous,

      First off, thanks for venting off, shits and all. I appreciate your time.

      Second, I don’t respect people who plagiarize, dead or alive. What about you?

      Cheers,
      Ella

      PS plagiarism is copying word for word. Just saying in case your reading comprehension skills do not give justice to your intelligence this time around.

      Like

      1. Uh-oh… you’re wrong about that my dear. Plagiarism isn’t just about copying word for word. It’s about using a text from a source on your work or any paper without citing the source. Even if you paraphrase the text, but proper citation is not met, then you are plagiarizing. It seems like you don’t have enough knowledge about plagiarism and then you say that you don’t respect people who plagiarize. Hmm? Think twice. Maybe you too are guilty of plagiarism, you’re just unaware 🙂 … For me, respect is something we should give to everyone not just anyone. I bet you want to be respected right? If that so, learn to respect people. Everyone commits mistake. And you are not exempted from making one too. Your writing isn’t that good either. It is way too far from professional writing. I bet, the eighteen year old who was “accused” of plagiarism was better than you, though. That’s all. Thanks.

        Like

  2. The act of suicide was a result of a teacher reprimanding his student. As a T I should be responsible for my actions and for what I tell my students especially if the topic is about plagiarism . I should have recommended my student for counselling the moment I realized he plagiarized. Outright reprimand may not be proper here because obviously the ego is involved here. Deep in my heart, I would like to suggest that teachers should be given a course in Psychology and culture etc. To fully understand the behavior of human beings and to feel and understand how it is to be a student. What a sad story, and to think that almost everyone is dishonest nowadays… waste of a beautiful life from one. It’s not all about the teaching,it’s all about the feelings too.

    Like

  3. The act of suicide was a result of a teacher reprimanding his student. As a T I should be responsible for my actions and for what I tell my students especially if the topic is about plagiarism . I should have recommended my student for counselling the moment I realized he plagiarized. Outright reprimand may not be proper here because obviously the ego is involved here. Deep in my heart, I would like to suggest that teachers should be given a course in Psychology and culture etc. To fully understand the behavior of human beings and to feel and understand how it is to be a student. What a sad story, and to think that almost everyone is dishonest nowadays… waste of a beautiful life from one. It’s not all about the teaching,it’s all about the caring too.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s