Valenzuela City Mayor Rex Gatchalian on Tuesday bewailed the lack of support from the Department of Education (DepEd) in the implementation of distance learning in the city.
“Nobody helped us in Valenzuela. We were looking for direction in the regional or national DepEd. It’s as if to each his own. There could have been one standardized approach,” Gatchalian said in an interview with Daily Tribune’s “Straight Talk.”
Gatchalian said Valenzuela City is now implementing a streaming school where the lessons being thought are anchored on the modules.
“We are not relying on the DepEd videos on TV. It is really personalized and custom-fit, contextualize. It is only the local government who conceptualized this,” he added.
Gatchalian stressed that a single approach should be implemented in the entire Metro Manila.
“They keep on saying its being contextualized to the terrain but Metro Manila should have been taken as a whole. Sadly, I did not feel DepEd regional and DepEd national, help out in crafting our learning continuity plan. And I am saying this as a fact because that is my experience,” he maintained.
The distance learning is now being implemented in the entire country after the government banned face-to-face learning due to continuous threat of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Meantime, the DepEd was urged to clarify its policy on whether the administrative cases filed against public school teachers will affect their promotions or not.
The issue was raised by Atty. Joseph Noel M. Estrada, managing director of Coordination Council of Private Educational Associations of the Philippines, during the Senate Basic Education Committee hearing on the implementation of the Magna Carta for Teachers.
Citing personal accounts, Estrada said some teachers are seeking help as there was a policy inside the DepEd where the appointments of some teachers are not processed due to the pending administrative cases.
These were apparently used to “discriminate” them as some situations involve “very personal matter.”
“Maybe, this is also something that we should look into if we want to correct this and solidify the rights of teachers against discrimination. Are there any specific cases that will be prohibitive or as a basis for “discriminating” against teacher-applicant?” he asked.
DepEd was also asked if administrative cases can also cover those that are “trivial or more serious” cases from personal matters or those that are only related to the employment or profession as a teacher.
DepEd Undersecretary Jesus Lorenzo Mateo said the case decisions are the only ones that will reflect and affect the application and promotion of a teacher.
Action Solidarity for the Empowerment of Teachers Secretary-General Fidel Fababier also backed Estrada’s claim, noting that some teachers are even using administrative cases as a “tool” against their competitors to get a higher position in DepEd.
with Hananeel Bordey