We received this e-mail from a Martin Cu, a Grade 12 student.

From: "martin cu"
To: info@ismstakeholders.com, board@ismanila.com, dares@ismanila.com, martellm@ismanila.com
Date: 05 Sep 2006, 09:51:55 PM
Subject: The Current State of Affairs at ISM

To the adult community of ISM,

As a member of this year's senior class, I feel obligated to comment on the recent events at our school. For the past 8 years, I have watched the school grow and have been proud to have been a part of this community. Recent events however, have been a major source of controversy and unwarranted tensions between faculty, parents and the board of trustees. Yesterday, the entire student body spent the course of the day gossiping about the manner by which Mr. David Toze's contract with the school was terminated. The manner in which this was handled only served to further the spread of the rumors. That Mr. Toze was removed from school by security personnel, on his birthday no less, served little conceivable strategic value, and lacked both the ethical and professional courtesy due to a man who has worked at this school for a number of years. While Mr. Toze may not be well liked, he is undeniably a competent administrator who has devoted time and effort to making necessary change in the school.

The ISM parent community gathered in force upon hearing the news, meeting in the FAT to express their views on the current situation. I must express my deep disappointment in the immature manner that the parent community conducted itself with when Ms. Oly Campos took the floor. To hear our supposed role models boo and jeer as someone with an opposing view point took the stage was nothing short of adolescent. Ms. Campos, too showed herself incapable of taking the moral highroad as she responded in kind when another parent took the stage, doing so with a great deal of bitterness and vehemence.

The conduct shown by both the parents of ISM and the representatives of the board was indicative of the steady drift of the situation away from being a matter of the best interests of the school, towards something more akin to a vessel for the settlement of personal differences. If the situation does indeed become personal, there is little that can be achieved to improve matters at school; rather things stand to take a turn for the worst as the focus is redirected from the real issues at hand.

That the student body has been kept, for the most part, in the dark about the current circumstances does little to alleviate any concerns that we have. Instead, this course of action leaves us to speculate about what is going on, which in turn breeds a both inaccurate and exaggerated sense of the state of affairs. This situation makes little sense to me, as it is we, the students, who will be most affected by the circumstances.

The situation reached its head this afternoon as 199 members of the support and teaching staff decided not to work tomorrow, in a display of their lack of faith in the board. With our school up for accreditation this year, it is most disappointing indeed to find that we are now in danger of losing a reputation that this community has spent so long attempting to build. The situation has gotten increasingly uglier, and shows little sign of improving with current state of things. As a concerned member of the student body, I ask both sides now to think not about what they stand to gain from discrediting the other and rather think about the best solution for the students and what we stand to lose if this continues. I urge you to open the lines of communication to the students, and to keep us informed of the situation, as we are more directly related to these events then either side seems to realize.


Martin Cu
Grade 12