28 April 2006

Filipino table etiquette punished at local school

Filipino table etiquette punished at local school:
Lunch monitor tells student his eating habits are ‘disgusting’

I picked up this news from Teacher Sol. She summarizes this appalling bit of news thus:

Luc Cagadoc’s table behaviour is traditionally Filipino; he fills his spoon by pushing the food on his plate with a fork, his mother, Maria Theresa Gallardo, says.

But after being punished by his school’s lunch program monitor more than 10 times this year for his mealtime conduct — including his technique — the seven-year-old told Gallardo said last week that he was too embarrassed to eat his dinner.

“Mommy, I don’t want to eat anymore,” Gallardo says Luc told her at the kitchen table April 11. “My teacher is telling me that eating with a spoon and fork is yucky and disgusting.”

When he eats with both a spoon and fork, instead of only one utensil, the Grade 2 student said the lunch monitor moves him to a table to sit by himself.

[Lunch monitor says that], “If your son eats like a pig he has to go to another table because this is the way we do it and how we’re going to do it every time.”

[The school principal adds], "personally, I don’t have any problems with it, but it is not the way you see people eat every day. I have never seen somebody eat with a spoon and a fork at the same time.”


Click here to read the entire news item.

This is simply abhorring. And this happening in a learning institution at that! Schools are supposed to teach children that they no longer live in a world where a country is composed solely of their native people. It's a global village. If we are to live together in harmony, we have to exercise tolerance for the trivial things like eating with a spoon and fork, or with chopsticks, or with hands, or with a knife and fork. And celebrate the uniqueness that each race and culture brings to the world!

Such a racist thing happening in a school, and with a narrow-minded Principal in tow, is despicable.

I eat with a spoon and fork, and pour vinegar by the spoonful over my rice swimming in tinola soup, and I don't mind if you eat with your bare hands, or with a knife and fork, or with chopsticks, or with a spatula for all I care. Just sit with me, share our food, and be my friend. A sunny weekend to everyone!
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