DepEd to hire 61,000 new teachers in 2013By Dona Z. Pazzibugan
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Education plans to hire more than 60,000 teachers next year to finally solve the shortage of teachers in public schools.
Defending the DepEd’s proposed P292.7-billion budget for next year, Education Secretary Armin Luistro said they would hire 61,000 new teachers and finish constructing some 66,000 classrooms and 90,000 toilets for public schools to end the backlog once and for all.
“By 2013 there will be no more backlog,” Luistro said when interviewed Wednesday at the Maria Clara High School for the formal turnover of a two-story 10-room school building donated by Japan.
He said the budget addresses the shortage created in past years when the department was unable to fill in the required number of teachers, classrooms, toilets, textbooks and armchairs in public schools due to insufficient budget.
In 2013, Luistro said the shortages faced every school year due to the rising student population will finally be addressed.
“Each school year there will be changes, with schools getting bigger. But these will be addressed within that year. There will be no more backlog,” he said.
Under a constitutional mandate to give the highest allocation to education, the Aquino administration has proposed additional P55.9 billion to DepEd’s budget for next year, or 23 percent higher than this year’s P238.8-billion budget.
He said the DepEd has already addressed this year’s backlog in textbooks and chairs.
“If you know of any shortage, report it to us because we have a budget for that,” he dared.
Luistro said their target this year is to build at least 20,000 classrooms in order to lessen the backlog to about 20,000 rooms, which will be constructed next year.
He said that since July 2010 when the Aquino administration took over, they have already turned over some 22,000 classrooms.
“I have a list where these classrooms are,” he said.
Luistro said the 61,000 new hires will be “new, regular” teacher items in the DepEd plantilla.
Luistro admitted 80 percent of their budget goes to the salaries alone of the 600,000 public school teachers under the government’s biggest bureaucracy.
Due to the lack of available slots in the DepEd, teachers agree to work as contractual hired usually by local governments while they wait for vacancies created when other public school teachers retire or resign.
Luistro said they would hire from among teachers currently under the employment of local school boards and from among volunteer teachers, part-time teachers in special programs and from among newly licensed teachers.