PN file photo.

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian has filed a bill seeking the creation of the National Public School Database to protect the records of learners against natural and man-made calamities.

Under his Senate Bill No. 478 or the Public School Database Act, the Department of Education (DepEd) is mandated to develop, operate, and maintain a national public school database that contains learner information, which includes, but not limited to, school grades, personal data, good moral record, and improvement tracking.

Gatchalian noted that physical documents are easily damaged and lost due to fragile storage, flood, fire, and other disasters.

He said by establishing a database, school records, important documents are preserved and become easily accessible to help with assessment, planning, and setting of operational targets.

The bill provides that school administrators shall be given access to the National Public School Database containing learner records and other learner specific data, including exam scores, grade levels, attendance, and immunization records.

“This is to help with the recording of biographical data for all learners, handling admissions and discharges, and the transfer of learners to other schools,” he said in a news release on Wednesday.

Gatchalian also proposes a Database Information Program to train education professionals in the development and maintenance of the information in the National Public School Database.

“The National Public School Database will serve as a mechanism to provide timely, relevant, and accurate information to school heads and teachers that will help them perform their administrative tasks more efficiently,” Gatchalian said in the bill’s explanatory note.

The DepEd is mandated to ensure the security and confidentiality of the information contained in the National Public School Database.

The bill provides that access to and the processing of information in the database shall be in accordance with the provisions of Republic Act No. 10173 or the Data Privacy Act of 2012. (PNA)