Alcuaz v. PSBA, 161 SCRA 7 (1988)
Petitioner bonafide students of PSBA QC staged demonstrations in the premises of the school.
An agreement between the school and the students was entered into about the regulations for the conduct of protest action. In spite of the agreement, it was alleged that the petitioners, committed tumultuous and anarchic acts within the premises of the school, with the cooperation of the intervening professors, causing disruption of classes to the prejudice of the majority students. The school took administrative sanctions upon them in view of their participation in the demonstration which caused the admission denial of the students for the second semester and the dismissal of the intervening professors.
W/N there has been deprivation of due process for petitioners-students who have been barred from re-enrollment and for intervenors-teachers whose services have been terminated as faculty members, on account of their participation in the demonstration or protest charged by respondents
No. There is no denial of due process.
PSBA-Q.C. no longer has any existing contract either with the students or with the intervening teachers. When a college student registers in a school, it is understood that he is enrolling for the entire semester. After the close of the first semester, the PSBA-QC no longer has any existing contract either with the students or with the intervening teachers. The contract having been terminated, there is no more contract to speak of. The school cannot be compelled to enter into another contract with said students and teachers.
The Supreme Court held that due process in disciplinary cases such as the case at bar does not entail proceedings and hearings similar to those prescribed for actions and proceedings in the courts of justice. The Court has already recognized the right of the school to refuse re-enrollment of students for academic delinquency and violation of disciplinary regulations. In the school’s administrative process, both students and professors were given three (3) days from receipt of letter to explain in writing why the school should not take administrative sanction against them.
With respect to the academic activities of the students and the teaching loads of the teachers, while the investigation is on-going, the respondent school has created new class for the petitioners and the intervening professors.
The Court then upheld that there is no denial of due process where all requirements of administrative due process were met by the school and the students were given the opportunity to be heard and that the right of expression and assembly are not absolute especially when parties are bound to certain rules under a contract.
Petition is dismissed but in the light of compassionate equity, students who were, in view of the absence of academic deficiencies, scheduled to graduate during the school year when this petition was filed, should be allowed to re-enroll and to graduate in due time.