Gatchalian urges DepEd to fill up 30,000 plus vacant teaching positions

Gatchalian urges DepEd to fill up 30,000 plus vacant teaching positions

By Ernie Reyes

MANILA — While the Department of Education (DepEd) is seeking an
additional P2.58 billion in 2022 to hire 10,000 teachers, more than
30,000 teaching positions are yet to be filled as of September this
year.

For Senator Win Gatchalian, this should push the DepEd to
accelerate its hiring process and fill the remaining vacancies.

Based on the Congressional Policy and Budget Research Department’s
(CPBRD) agency notes for DepEd’s 2022 budget, 71% of DepEd’s 46,901
total unfilled positions refer to unfilled teaching positions. This is
equivalent to 33,260 unfilled teaching positions and 16,460 or almost
half of which are for Teacher I positions.

DepEd officials explained that the hiring process usually involves six
months and involves the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and
the Civil Service Commission (CSC). Because of COVID-19 restrictions
and the imposition of an alternative work arrangement, the agency also
had to work on the hiring process with a limited number of staff.

“The positions left unfilled could equate to P13 billion in funds that
are not being disbursed. This had been a recurring issue. I remember
some senators, including myself, flagged this also last year and the
year before that. We have to, once for all, find ways to reduce the
six-month turn-around time somehow,” said Gatchalian in a Senate panel
hearing on the proposed budget of DepEd and its attached agencies.

To help reduce barriers in filling Teacher I positions, Undersecretary
Wilfredo Cabral shared that the agency mulls accepting applicants who
have no prior experience, similar to other entry-level positions.

For Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, P1.82 billion was allocated for the
creation of 10,000 teaching positions. While DepEd is creating the
same number of teaching positions in 2022, the higher P.2.58
billion-budget is meant to accommodate the increase in basic salaries
under the latest tranche of the Salary Standardization Law. (ai/mtvn)

Sen. Win Gatchalian

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