MANILA Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Briones on Monday said teachers who are serving in the mid-term elections exude high morale.
In an interview with the Philippine News Agency (PNA), Briones said she has personally observed the dedication and enthusiasm of the teachers performing poll duties, despite the presence of election-related problems.
"They do their work, walang reklamo, hindi naman nila ako nakita agad pagpasok ko sa eskwelahan (no complaints, they did not see me immediately when I entered the school). I saw how they dealt with everybody else, very polite, and so are the voters. They are very polite even if they are waiting for their turn to use markers," she said.
Earlier, Briones voted at the Don Jose Heights Covered Court in Fairview, Quezon City at around 10 a.m.
Briones said the teachers' high morale could be attributed to their awareness of the DepEd's support for them.
"Karamihan sa kanila nakikita nila na inaalagaan natin ang interest ng mga teachers. Halimbawa, iyong pag-ne-negotiate sa pag-increaseng kanilang (Most of them see that we take care of the teachers' interests. For example, the negotiation for the increase of their) honoraria and additional benefits and this app which includes questions regarding their honoraria and what kind of protection they will get in extreme incidents," she added.
In DepEd Memorandum 21 series of 2019, teachers on poll duty shall be entitled to death benefits, medical assistance and legal indemnification package apart from their honoraria and transportation allowance.
The death benefit amounts to PHP500,000 while the medical assistance has a PHP200,000 limit.
"But, I keep on reiterating that it (elections) doesn't revolve around us (DepEd personnel) although I say we're the biggest in number but there's also the police and the health workers who are also working and risking their lives during elections but with all due respect, media tend to focus on teachers only," Briones said.
She added that the creation of the DepEd Election Monitoring App may have added to the increase confidence of the teachers.
"Imagine it's already 200,000 teachers reporting issues from the ground in real time. They're empowered, they know that the app is there to be used for their protection, to make their work lighter," she said.
The DepEd election monitoring mobile application was launched on Friday to gather, consolidate, centralize, and manage all election-related information in a more efficient way.
"Ultimately, I believe the teachers are inspired by the voters who are willing to wait in long lines to perform their right. It is equally inspiring to see that people still believe in democracy," she added. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency