SCHOOLS GET ADDITIONAL FUNDS FOR COMING POLLS
Teachers and other employees of the Department of Education, who will serve as board of canvassers – get ready.
There is an additional P50 million budget for the DepEd this year, because of the upcoming May mid-term elections, and for the provision of security to all DepEd personnel during elections.
The funds are a new budget item given to DepEd’s Election Task Force after the national budget deliberation. DepEd employees who serve as board of canvassers during the elections will receive honoraria or payment of the service which comes from Commission on Elections' (Comelec) budget.
DepEd, however, did not get financial support for the cleaning and maintenance of schools which are used as polling precincts in the past. Regional directors, superintendents, non-teachers were always on guard because schools are used during the elections.
Now, the additional P50 million in funds will be used for maintenance, and protect all the facilities and properties of the schools, according to the DepEd.
Earlier, the DepEd expressed confidence that teachers would be paid for their service during the elections, responding to concerns earlier raised by the Comelec about the possibility of government operating on a re-enacted budget until election time.
Elections, after all, are provided under the Constitution, and it is part of our democratic system – there is no debate about that.
Meanwhile, the DepEd also cautioned all officials, teaching and non-teaching personnel of the agency against electioneering and engaging in any partisan political activity. They have been reminded to strictly observe the periods of certain prohibited acts in connection with the 2019 mid-term polls.
According to the Constitution, no officer or employee in the civil service shall engage, directly or indirectly, in any electioneering or partisan political campaign.
DepEd said the same applies to officials, teachers, and employees. DepEd must maintain its focus on non-partisan public service and remain a beacon of integrity in these times.
--oOo— The author is Teacher III at Benedicto Elementary School, Floridablanca, Pampanga