DepEd: No mandatory contributions to Christmas parties
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education (DepEd) has allowed the conduct of Christmas parties in public schools and its field offices but underscored that there should be no involuntary contributions to the celebration.
Citing the difficult economic situation, Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte issued DepEd Order (DO) No. 50 on Dec. 2 which indicated that the parties should be “simple yet meaningful.”
“Celebrations in schools and DepEd offices, as far as practicable, should be simple yet meaningful. Christmas party themes should not result [in] expenses that will become a burden on parents, students, and DepEd personnel,” the order said.
Themes, costumes, decorations, and exchange gifts are all voluntary, Duterte said in the order, adding that no student or personnel “should be forced to contribute, participate or use their money for the celebration.”
No solicitations Likewise, the learners should not be excluded from participating in the Christmas party in case they won’t voluntarily contribute or offer a prepared gift.
“Gift-giving should be guided by the spirit of sharing and should not lead to extravagant spending,” Duterte said.
DepEd personnel were also reminded that in-cash or in-kind solicitations are not allowed for the occasion.
Instead of buying new decorations, DO 50 urged to recycle old Christmas ornaments instead.
The parties may be arranged during class hours “so long as it does not interfere with the scheduled lesson plans.”
The policy further said that in holding Christmas get-togethers and other year-end activities, the provision of departmental services must not be compromised.
School division offices are allowed to issue additional guidelines according to their local customs and traditions.
Meanwhile, private schools, community learning centers, and state or local universities and colleges have the option to adopt the order’s provisions in implementing their respective Christmas gatherings, Duterte said.
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