/ 17 February 2023

SENATOR Sherwin Gatchalian urged the Department of Social Welfare and Development to work with Parent-Teacher Associations in strengthening parental involvement in child development and in addressing bullying.

Gatchalian made the call as experts highlighted how children engaged in bullying tend to be exposed to different forms of violence at home.

In a Senate panel hearing on the implementation of the Anti-Bullying Act of 2013, Dr. Bernadette Madrid of the Child Protection Network Foundation said that the alarming incidence of bullying in schools reflect the prevalence of violence that children experience.

Gatchalian said that parents can play a bigger role in addressing bullying through the Parent Effectiveness Service Program Act or Republic Act 11908 which he authored.

The law establishes the Parent Effectiveness Service Program to assist all parents and parent-substitutes in strengthening their knowledge and skills in responding to their parental duties and responsibilities.

Before the passage of the law, the DSWD was already implementing the PES in child development centers.

Gatchalian said that reaching out to at least 20 million parents is quite a challenge, which could be addressed by tapping PTAs.

“You can ride on the existing network of DepEd because they already have the PTA. That is the fastest way of accessing our parents. If you have the modules, just partner with the DepEd because the parents are already there. All you need to do is work with the DepEd to mandate the parents to join in the Parent Effectiveness Service,” he said.