This shows the makeshift faculty room of Math teachers in Bacoor National High School. The room, according to teacher Maricel Herrera, used to be an old restroom.
Facebook/Maricel Herrera
‘There are proper procedures in addressing welfare woes,’ DepEd tells teachers
( - June 6, 2019 - 10:52am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education said it is trying to address the shortage of faculty rooms at Bacoor National High School after photos of an old restroom converted into a teachers’ quarter made rounds online.

But the agency added that there are appropriate administrative procedures in dealing with welfare concerns of teachers and personnel.

“Concrete steps have been undertaken to resolve any conflict in the interest of orderly operations of the school,” DepEd said in a statement Wednesday night.

It also said it has included the construction of administration buildings in its program.

“DepEd has included in its 2020 budget request to the Department of Budget and Management the funding for an initial batch of such buildings that will have space for principal’s office, faculty room, guidance room, library, and school supplies and equipment storage in times of calamities,” DepEd said.

Days before the opening of classes, Maricel Herrera, the school’s faculty association president, uploaded on Facebook photos of an old restroom transformed into a faculty room. Her post outraged social media users, who said the situation mirrors the dismal state of public schools in country.

But it did not sit well with Anita Rom, the school principal, who threatened to file charges against Herrera for supposedly ruining the image of the school and the DepEd, according to a report on ABS-CBN.

‘Teachers chose bathroom as faculty room’

DepEd, like the school principal, stressed that the teachers using the old restroom as faculty room chose to stay there, noting the educators were offered the library, guidance center and advisory classrooms to serve as temporary faculty rooms.

“It must be emphasized that the use of restroom is the choice of the 11 teachers themselves who then complained about it in social media,” the agency said.

The department explained the school’s decision to move to single-shift classes this school year resulted in faculty rooms needing to be converted back into additional classrooms. The school has 7,000 learners.

“Even as a memorandum to vacate the comfort room has already been issued by the principal, the department would like to ensure that the resulting temporary arrangement will be acceptable to all concerned,” DepEd said.

In an ABS-CBN report, Herrera said the alternative locations offered to teachers are not close to classrooms and do not have enough space to accommodate the educators of the school.

DepEd Secretary was earlier quoted in media reports that the move of Bacoor teachers was “more dramatic” and “more touching.”

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers accused the agency of turning a blind eye on the problems confronting public schools across the country.

“The deficiencies are of the government’s doing and not of the teachers’,” it said.

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