Miriam College investigates reported harassment by teachers

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 27) — Miriam College says it has formed an independent committee to investigate reports of harassment by some faculty members and promises to do better in providing a safe learning environment for its students.

"The school has formed an independent institutional committee to look into reported incidents of sexual harassment committed by teachers on their students. The Committee is likewise mandated to recommend sanctions for those found guilty of inappropriate behavior," Miriam College said in a statement.

"We encourage all aggrieved to speak out and voice their concerns to the Committee. Rest assured that all parties involved will be afforded due process through an impartial and objective proceeding," it added.

MCHS said it will start accepting written reports of incidents on Monday, June 29 at safespaces@mc.edu.ph.

Several students and alumni called for justice and accountability from Miriam College, after numerous reports of harassment by some faculty members surfaced online this week.

At least 200 members of Miriam College High School (MCHS) batch 2006 signed and submitted a letter to the school's administration on Saturday, expressing support for their fellow students and calling for justice.

"Today, we demand the accountability and action that students rightfully deserve," MCHS Pink 2006 said in a statement.

The group of former students called upon the school to take action, including re-evaluating and improving reporting and investigation procedures for allegations of sexual harassment, empowering students to report incidents of abuse, establishing and implementing clear rules for student-teacher interaction, and requiring all school employees to undergo anti-sexual harassment training.

"We, the members of Pink '06 have now been driven to act based on what Miriam education taught us: to do what is right in the face of blatant injustice. As former students, as critical thinkers, and as adults who believe in the collective cry of our young students, we ask Miriam College to do the same," it added.

MCHS’s student publication, The Magnificat, released a statement on Friday strongly condemning all forms of sexual harassment.

"As an institution grounded in truth and justice, we must ask the school for transparency and accountability, demand justice for all victims, and take concrete action in making sure future students do not encounter the same kind of trauma ever again," The Magnificat said in a statement.

The hashtag #MCHSdobetter was trending in the Philippines this week, with several students and alumni speaking up about their personal experiences of harassment by MCHS teachers.