Shock on students, parents and teachers as teacher turns suicidal
Recently, the suicidal cases are on the rise. Every other day in the media all over, there are very many such cases of suicide which are being reported. The reasons for the suicides are however yet to be established as most of the victims are not leaving any suicide notes. Investigations are being carried on to try solving the dilemma.Suicide may be viewed as an easy way of dealing with the hardships in life. This could be a pro but the cons are so many including; hurting one's loved ones, losing on the good things waiting in the future and failing one's dependants. Personally, I don't support commit suicide as life is sacred and only God can take it away.As it is now the trend, Ruenas, a thirty nine year old teacher at L.A. Unified Miramonte Elementary is reported to have committed suicide. He was a well known teacher who always put the needs of students first. He even offered tutorial classes over the weekend and after school to ensure that his students produced the best results.Throughout his fourteen years of teaching he hardly ever missed work without earlier stating that on that particular day he would not make it. So when he did not go to work on that particular week, everyone was worried as that was completely unlike him. Only later were they to learn that he had taken his own life under unclear circumstances. The entire Miramonte community was in shock; the students, fellow teachers and the parents.Ruelas was well known by everyone attached to this community, he stood out in the crowd. He was known to be a very caring teacher who prioritized both his work and the welfare of his students. Even the principal of L.A. Unified Miramonte Elementary held him high in terms of delivering good performance. Even for fellow teachers he would normally be in charge of organizing volleyball games, at times bonfires and even the hiking trips that they would have from time to time. He was an all round individual. On learning about his sudden and unfortunate demise, parents, teachers and students started writing messages and bringing flowers, candles, white balloons at his memorial site.Despite the fact that Ruelas had spent his entire life giving back to the community it is very clear that the community did not care for him as much. Normally, before an individual decides to take his own life, it is mostly as a result of solitude and feeling unworthy before the rest of the community. In life however, everything is not a give and take kind of situation. Mr. Ruelas should have realized that before deciding to take his own life.
The big question however was what could possibly have led him to take his own life. It was mysterious as his body was discovered under a bridge and there was no suicide note. His close family however tried to shed some light on the reason for taking his own life. They said it was as a result of teachers' performance that was published in 'The Times' website. He had been ranked 'less effective' compared to his peers. He went into depression and that led him to take his own life. He had always believed that he was a good teacher and did not think he would be ranked that badly.Level of performance is subjective and if one is not careful he or she could end up living this life believing the completely opposite of what one really is. Mr. Ruelas believed that he was among the best teachers yet the database analysis showed that he was not performing well. When looking for opinions on how well one is doing, it is advisable not to search for answers from our relatives, friends or people we are emotionally attached to. Many are the times their opinions will be biased as they would not want to hurt us.Mr. Martin Sandoval, the principal, added that just like every other teacher in the region Ruelas felt pressured to perform well. He probably tried his best but ended up being disappointed. Even a young girl at the school, Andromeda Palma, who is only thirteen years old recounted how Ruelas had told her that she should not give up in maths as it did not matter how far she had come from and that if anyone failed to go to school, they would become useless in this world.
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The teacher gave advice yet he did not take a pill of his own medicine. Being ranked as being 'less effective' should not have made him commit suicide, there was still room for improvement. Life has ups and downs. Accepting his performance would have had positive influence on his students. His actions only portrayed him as a loser who could not accept reality.Ruelas was known to be a very jovial person always who was at most times smiling. He had the will to help people in his community. The last encounter with Ruelas was at a school celebration and some members of the staff said he had seemed distracted and upset while some said he was just the way he always was. Miss Maria Jimenez, the school's aide, even noticed that he was not smiling as he always did. Some parents even enquired whether everything was alright with him.Though some people noticed his bizarre behavior, no one cared to lend him a shoulder to lean on. No one offered to listen to what he was going through. When going through hard times it is good to be approachable and share our problems after all, a problem half shared is half solved. Assuming that everything will be okay and that our loved ones probably need some time alone could lead to tragedies just like it happened with Ruelas.Ruela's close family members were very upset about the publication in 'The Times' and even said that they would boycott the paper. Parents on the other hand were asking that the page on Ruelas be taken down in his memory. Nancy Sullivan, 'The Times' communication's vice president, extended their sincere sympathy to the students, the parents and the teachers of L.A. Unified's Miramonte Elementary for their loss. She however also said that they published the database because they bore that responsibility on all public employees who provided important services and that they did so with the belief that parents and students would also be able to draw judgments for themselves from the information given. She said that the information was not false; it was from a reliable source.Truth always hurts. Unfortunately, that does not mean that it should not be told. As the recipients it is our duty to accept it. When the facts are laid down, we have no excuse and escaping will not make it better but shameful acts like suicide will just how our level of intelligence. The analysts must continue doing their work irrespective of whether we accept or not. Facts speak for themselves.Following the sudden demise of Ruelas, there were some crisis counselors deployed so as to help students and teachers who probably needed such help. There was also an emotional gathering between the school officials and some parents who had been terribly affected by the death of Ruelas.The school also organized a community memorial service.It is good that the school put some effort by having the crisis counselors as it is better late than never. However I think that they should have an available counselor at any particular time not only when there is crisis. This way they prevent any more suicidal cases in their school. This would result in less distractions leading to an improved performance of the school.It is also important to be open enough about any problem that we may be facing because at times we may assume that everyone is aware of what we are going through yet they have no idea at all. It is only when a tragedy has passed that everyone starts recounting and realizes the ambiguous signs that they should have reacted to so as to save the situation. Unfortunately, by that time it is already too late.Solely depending on positive opinions is disastrous. Opening up to people eases pain and prevents unnecessary tragic measures. Thinking about it, the benefits are mainly to the victim as they can still move on.It is very important that people learn that in life not everything turns out as per our expectations. Sometimes things are good and at times they are bad we must learn to accept corrections and to accept that in every field there are obstacles and competition is stiff since everyone wants to outsmart the other. Committing suicide may seem to be the easy way out but remember there is always a better option. Facing obstacles in life does not mean you can evade them, you need to face them head on, to be strong at all times. After all, they come and eventually pass. It is advisable to hold on.