Field trip disaster: Students' parents confront school reps

By Pia Gutierrez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 21 2014 06:16 PM | Updated as of Aug 22 2014 02:16 AM

Bulacan State University says guidelines followed in field trip

MANILA - The parents of the 7 Bulacan State University (BSU) students who died while on a field trip on Tuesday could not hide their anger as they came face to face with the officials of the school.

Harold and Donna Marcelo, parents of 16-year-old Helena who was among the first bodies recovered, assailed the school's neglect that led to the death of their child.

Helena and 6 other students drowned while crossing Madlum River in Barangay Sibul, San Miguel last Tuesday.

The university earlier said that they would be providing "immediate assistance to the fullest to the bereaved families."

The university president, Dr. Mariano de Jesus, personally went to the wake of the students to condole with the families.

"We just want to provide better education to the students by providing not only theories inside the classroom but rather going out for better exposure. Ang nangyari ay wala namang may kagustuhan at ang tamang planning ay ginawa naman namin. Kung may pagkukulang man kami, humihingi kami ng paumanhin at pakikiramay sa kanila," De Jesus said.

The BSU has temporarily stopped educational tours as it continues to investigate the tragic field trip accident.

"Ire-revisit namin yung mga policies, measures on the basis of CMO No. 17 of CHED (Commission on Higher Education), on the basis of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan order on field trips," De Jesus said.

The university has formed a crisis committee to investigate the tragedy, which includes Adventours Xchange, the private travel and tours company which the school contracted for the field trip.

De Jesus, however, assured that the school's internal guidelines and procedures were followed in the planning of the trip.