Bulacan State University and Adventours, the travel agency they said the school contracted, made some violations with regards to the field trip held in San Miguel, Bulacan that took seven lives of students as concluded by a fact-finding committee.
The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) mandates schools to inform CHED about the plans of the field trip at least one month before the school year begins as stated in the Circular Memorandum 17-2012. According to retired judge Manuel Siyangco, BSU failed to comply with the said memorandum. While the president of BSU, Mariano De Jesus, claimed that he knew about the memorandum and what it states, he admitted that he failed to check if the dean of the College of Tourism sent a copy of the planned educational trip to CHED.
Adventours and BSU also failed to to observe Bulacan government’s Ordinance No. 07-2013 which states that the school and the agency should coordinate with the local government of Bulacan. They failed to communicate their itinerary before they had their trip.
Read: CHED and University are Conducted Separate Investigations
The trip was organized by FAST, a recognized tourism student group with a faculty adviser. The excursion was considered a class activity, so a lot of students joined.
See Last Photos of BSU Students Before Drowning on Field Trip Tragedy here.
Among violations are a few others: not enough guideline of responsibilities for the faculty adviser to a student organization, incomplete medical clearance of students, lack or no supervision of faculty and staff, lack of able first aid provider in the area, waivers without a specific itinerary of the trip, lack of clearance from the LGU and the claim of the students that the trip is mandatory for their grade.
On August 19, 2014, the field trip in question was joined by forty tourism students held in San Miguel, Bulacan. Unfortunately, as they cross the Madlum River, sudden flash flood took away seven students whose bodies were recovered in the next few days.
The bereaved family members were dismayed because they knew that the school could have done something better. In three days, the fact-finding committee would be ready to pass their report to the House committee and CHED in hope to shed light as to who would bear the responsibility of the tragedy. References: Gma, YouTube