34 Juvenile Offenders Successfully Complete Elementary and High School

Thirty-four children in conflict with the law (CICL) residing at the National Training School for Boys (NTSB) have completed their elementary and senior high school education, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said on Friday.

The NTSB, a residential care facility managed by the DSWD Calabarzon, provides protection and parental care to CICLs in a residential setting to help them with their rehabilitation journey.

“Congratulations to the 27 senior high school graduates and seven elementary school graduates from the NTSB. You serve as a testament to the miracles created by second chances. Despite the circumstances that you are in, you allowed yourselves to make right choices that will shape a future that you are proud of,” said DSWD spokesperson Irene Dumlao during the graduation ceremony held last May 30.

She is also an assistant secretary for the Disaster Response Management Group.

“The achievements that you received will also serve as an inspiration for us in the Department to continue to advocate for the stronger implementation of restorative justice in the Philippines,” she added.

The DSWD cited that under Republic Act 9344, or the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act, restorative justice includes the comprehensive management of CICL from “prevention to rehabilitation and reintegration” into society.

In addition to the 34 graduates, 15 Grade 10 student-residents received recognition during their moving-up ceremony on the same day.

During the ceremony, senior high school graduate “Tony” delivered a commencement speech thanking the people who helped him in his journey inside the facility.

“I never had a negative view of the NTSB; rather, I have seen my stay here as a test or challenge that I know will help me in my journey of self-discovery, in uncovering and developing my talents and abilities. Alongside this is the strengthening of myself in the face of all the challenges in life that may come, and gaining a wealth of knowledge about improving myself and my life,” he said.

According to Tony, his identity has been further shaped, and he has become stronger in facing life’s challenges.

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