Senator Win Gatchalian is urging the new administration to decongest the workload of public school teachers so they could focus on their teaching duties.
Gatchalian emphasized that decongesting the workload of teachers affects the quality and delivery of education to the country’s K to 12 learners. In 2019, the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) pointed out that the actual teaching is sidelined by other administrative and student support roles of teachers, as well as their participation in programs like mass immunizations, deworming, and elections, among others, which affect the quality of their instruction.
One of the immediate steps that Gatchalian proposes is for the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to release funds for the 5,000 Administrative Officers (AO) in public elementary and high schools under the Department of Education (DepEd). The department has already requested the release of these funds.
In the long run, there should be enough non-teaching personnel based on the school structure and staffing pattern, which the DepEd Bureau of Human Resource and Organizational Development (BHROD) is expected to study and develop with the Research Center for Teacher Quality (RCTQ).
Gatchalian urged the DepEd to adopt the proposal of PIDS to conduct evidence-based studies on teacher workload. This is to rationalize the job functions of public school teachers, allow them to balance their workload, and allocate more of their time to improve learner outcomes.
The proposed study on teacher workload is one of Gatchalian’s top three recommendations when he reported the basic education panel’s findings on the implementation of the Magna Carta for Public School Teachers (Republic Act No. 4670).
“Sa pagtataguyod ng kapakanan ng ating mga guro, dapat tiyakin nating nailalaan nila ang mas maraming oras para tutukan ang kanilang mga mag-aaral. Mahalagang pagsikapan nating maalis na sa mga guro ang mga trabahong walang direktang kinalaman sa kanilang pagtuturo, lalo na’t ang makikinabang dito ay ang ating mga mag-aaral,” said Gatchalian.