Catholic schools to gov’t: Go to roots of insurgency instead of red-tagging

Catholic schools to gov’t: Go to roots of insurgency instead of red-tagging

The Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines has joined in condemning the red-tagging by the military of some if its member schools. PHOTO COURTESY OF CEAP

By CBP News

January 31, 2021

Manila, Philippines

A group of Catholic educators called on government to address injustices and other roots of the insurgency problem rather than red-tag educational institutions.

The Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines said that continued red-tagging will not help but only “endangers the security and welfare of teachers and students”.

“We encourage the government to address the roots of the problem of insurgency, like poverty and marginalization,” the CEAP said in a statement released Jan. 30.

The group made the statement after the military accused some of its member schools as breeding grounds for communist rebels.

The military has earlier identified the Ateneo De Manila University, University of Santo Tomas, De La Salle University, Ateneo De Naga University and Holy Angel University as among the schools that are allegedly hotbeds of rebel recruitment and radicalization.

The CEAP assured the government that Catholic schools can never support any armed struggle because they are committed to nation-building “through peaceful and non-violent means”.

“We remain committed to live out our Catholic principles of respect for human life and liberties, and promotion of social justice and peaceful social transformation,” it said.

“We continue to promote our Constitutionally-guaranteed basic human rights of free speech, expression, and association,” the group added.

The CEAP, which has more than 1,500 schools in its roster, also stressed the importance of upholding academic freedom, which provides “our society a space, free from external constraints, where truth can be sifted from untruth, and right from wrong”.

“We believe this is essential and necessary for the benefit of society and the common good,” it said.

Saying that the challenges of nation-building are “complex”, the CEAP said it will continue to engage the government “in a spirit of partnership and dialogue”.

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