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Stop K to 12, teachers press Supreme Court

By: - Reporter / @JeromeAningINQ
/ 02:06 AM February 27, 2016
INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / RICHARD A. REYES

INQUIRER FILE PHOTO / RICHARD A. REYES

TEACHERS’ groups are asking the Supreme Court to issue a temporary restraining order and rule quickly on their petition to stop the implementation of the K to 12 basic education curriculum.

In an urgent manifestation and motion for early solution filed by lawyer Jonathan Sale, the Council of Teachers and Staff of Colleges and Universities of the Philippines (Cotescup) and other petitioners said several higher educational institutions (HEI) have already began retraining and retrenching their teaching staff in line with the K to 12 program.

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“Time is of the essence and the situation is extremely urgent, which is why the early resolution of the prayer for issuance of a temporary restraining order and injunctive relief is necessary….Petitioners, particularly UST Faculty Union and Union of Faculty and Employees of SLU, and their respective members, will suffer irreparable injury. The status quo must be preserved,” the petitioners said.

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The K to 12 program, embodied in Republic Act No. 10533, or the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013, provides for kindergarten and 12 years of basic education, composed of six years of primary education, four years of junior high school, and two years of senior high school.

Sale referred to actions related to the introduction this year of the senior high school program planned by the University of Sto. Tomas in Manila and the St. Louis University in Baguio City, whose faculty and employees’ unions are among the petitioners in the cases pending before the high court.

At the UST, Sale said the senior high principal has issued a memorandum ordering HEI faculty members to attend all retooling seminars, warning that failure to do so would mean forfeiture of teaching slots in senior high school.

The teaching staff were also required to observe an eight-hour work day, subject to future guidelines. Sale pointed that this was not the way teachers at the UST high school are currently compensated as they perform nontime work, that is, they are compensated based on teaching, research, administrative and extension workloads.

Retrenchment

At the SLU, Sale said the school administration has issued guidelines for the retrenchment and early retirement of employees, as well as separation pay and retirement packages. The lawyer said other measures to preserve jobs should have first been discussed with the employees since retrenchment is supposed to be the “last resort” for employers.

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TAGS: Council of Teachers and Staff of College and Universities of the Philippines, Nation, News, Supreme Court
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