Oct 1, 2020

Public school teachers warned vs. electioneering

(File photo)

Public school teachers are being warned by the Department of Education against electioneering.

Grace Estefano, information officer of DepEd-Palawan, said Wednesday they will conduct a two-day Executive Conference of all school heads in the province on January 31 to February 1 to stress this.

Estefano said the school heads will be reminded to inform teachers to do their election tasks without partisanship on May 13, 2019.

“Magkakaroon kami ng executive conference at doon natin iisa-isahin… kumbaga one time big time na pagpapaalala sa mga school head na sa pagbabalik nila sa kanilang mga stations, sila na ‘yong magpaalala sa mga kasamahan nila sa mga eskwelahan,” Estefano said.

On January 15, Education Secretary Leonor Briones cautioned all officials, teaching and non-teaching personnel of the agency against electioneering and engaging in any partisan political activity as the election period opened.

The warning is provided under DepEd Order No. 48, Series of 2018, that identified activities regarded as partisan political activities, in accordance with existing rules and regulations promulgated by the Civil Service Commission (CSC) and the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

These are the following:

  • Forming organizations, associations, clubs, committees, or other groups of persons for the purpose of soliciting votes and/or undertaking any campaign for or against a candidate/party;
  • Making speeches, announcements, or commentaries, or holding interviews for or against the election of any candidate or party for public office;
  • Publishing, displaying, or distributing campaign literature, or materials designed to support or oppose the election of any candidate or party;
  • Receiving any contributions for political purposes, either directly or indirectly;
  • Wearing of t-shirts or pins, caps or any other similar election paraphernalia bearing the names of the candidates or political party except as authorized by Comelec;
  • Being a watcher for a political party or candidate during the election;
  • Utilizing government resources such as personnel, including job order or contract of service hires, time, and properties for political purposes

Officials of the department are also prohibited from using their positions to influence teaching and/or non-teaching personnel under their supervision to support any candidate or political party.

“Any DepEd official or personnel who commit any of the prohibited acts shall be dealt with in accordance with DepEd Order No. 49, Series of 2006 (Revised Rules of Procedure of the Department of Education in Administrative Cases), the Revised Rules on Administrative Cases in the Civil Service, and the Omnibus Election Code”, the order said.

Estefano said that those who will be found violating the order may face removal from service.

“Ang una diyan sa administrative case kapag napatunayan ay removal from the service and this is not only for DepEd personnel but to any government employees and officers,” she added.

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