/ 15 October 2021

A GROUP questioned the memorandum issued by the Department of Education on the Interim Guidelines of Student Government Elections for School Year 2021-2022 for its alleged “anti-democratic characteristics.”

“We assert that this memorandum is a hindrance to the fullest realization of the students’ democratic rights, particularly with regard to suffrage. These limiting provisions halt the opportunity for willing candidates to exercise their political participation in a time when genuine student representation is needed the most,” Rise for Education Alliance – High School said in a letter to DepEd Undersecretary Alain Pascua.

The group disagreed on the provision that each elected class president will be the representative and participant of this school year’s SPG/SSG elections and SSG/SPG officers shall be prioritized in the appointment of officers.

“Devoid of any clear rationale to justify these provisions, we see this move as potentially detrimental to the way students perceive electoral processes. Genuine student representation must not be compromised, and mechanisms must be actively taken by the Department to ensure that students are able to freely vote and be voted for,” it said.

The group urged DepEd to reassess the memorandum.

It also demanded that students must be involved in the decision-making process to guarantee that the steps to be taken will protect the interests of the students.