/ 11 August 2021

THE ALLIANCE of Concerned Teachers blasted the Department of Education for giving teachers more tasks that prevents them from having the much-needed rest they need.

The group also lambasted DepEd for not compensating the 3-month worth of teachers overtime last school year.

“Our teachers are very tired after working non-stop for 13 months without proper compensation, overly delayed benefits, and without genuine work break since the start of the pandemic last year. Pinagtaksilan na nga ang pangakong dagdag sahod, wala na ngang internet allowance, delayed at kulang ang benepisyo, pati ba naman ang karapatang magpahinga ay ipagkakait na rin ng gobyernong ito?” ACT Secretary General Raymond Basilio said.

The classes ended on July 10, however, Basilio said, teachers were still given tasks such as organizing graduation programs, reading of forms, and submission various reports that include the performance evaluation portfolio, Learning Delivery Modules, learners’ performance report, summary of quarterly summative assessments, feeding program, school based management documents, among others.

“Dinadaya ng DepEd ang mga guro. Kunwari ay tapos na ang trabaho noong Hulyo 10 at sa Setyembre 13 pa ang pasukan pero kaliwa’t kanan ang utos nang walang opisyal na order ng pagtatrabaho para makalibre ito sa panibagong overtime ng mga guro,” Basilio said.

DepEd recently released Department Order 029, s. 2021 which detailed the school calendar for School Year 2021–2022 and set the class opening on September 13. However, it also set the start of Brigada Eskwela on August 3, less than a month since the last school year came to a close, while enrollment period is set to start on August 13, exactly a month before the school year reopens on September.

“Malinaw sa kalendaryo mismo ng DepEd, wala itong plano na pagpahingahin ang mga guro. Hindi na ito makatao, hindi makina ang ating kaguruan!” Basilio said.

ACT demands DepEd to immediately respond to these concerns as teachers already feel burnt out long before classes ended and many have also expressed physical and mental distress from the grueling year.

“Our teachers need a break, too. With meager salaries and delayed benefits, overwhelming workload, and excessive work hours, they are already being subjected to inhumane working conditions, and the least the government can do is give them time to recuperate and compensate them for their service,” Basilio said.