Department of Education

To focus on teaching, DepEd eyes to remove admin tasks from teachers

Bonz Magsambol

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To focus on teaching, DepEd eyes to remove admin tasks from teachers

PHYSICALLY PRESENT. Public school teachers of the Rafael Palma elementary school in Manila report back to work after the DepEd orders them to be in their classrooms even without their students, on April 25, 2022.


Aside from off-loading administrative chores, the Department of Education is also looking into giving 'non-basic wage' benefits to teachers to augment their salaries
To focus on teaching, DepEd eyes to remove admin tasks from teachers

MANILA, Philippines – In a bid to “upgrade” teaching standards of basic education in the country, Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte is eyeing to take out administrative tasks from teachers so they could focus more on teaching.

This plan was bared by Michael Poa, spokesperson of the Department of Education (DepEd), during the joint press briefing with the Office of the Vice President (OVP) held on Wednesday, July 27, at the DepEd Central Office in Pasig City.

“What will happen is that, our department headed by the Vice President and Secretary Sara Duterte is planning to ease off the administrative tasks from teachers because we noticed that aside from teaching, they also have administrative tasks,” Poa said in a mix of English and Filipino, when asked about Duterte’s plans for the welfare of teachers.

“Our plan for now, we need to upskill our teachers. To complement that, we will perhaps have to hire non-teaching staff to handle those things, at least for the teachers,” he added.

To focus on teaching, DepEd eyes to remove admin tasks from teachers

In a statement, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers welcomed Duterte’s plan. But the group said that aside from non-teaching personnel handling administrative tasks, the DepEd should also provide all schools with their own nurses, registrars, custodians, clerks, librarians, security guards and utility workers.

“In the absence of these, teachers were forced to take on these functions that has considerably taken a lot of their time and effort from teaching,” ACT said.

ACT is an organization composed of some 300,000 public and private school teachers in the country.

For years, teachers have complained of paperwork piling up that hinders them from preparing lessons.

Duterte’s plan for the welfare of teachers was asked during the press briefing because this was not mentioned during the first State of the Nation Address of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. last Monday, July 25. Though the President mentioned “promising” plans for the education recovery, teachers’ welfare was left out.

Non-basic wage benefits

Aside from off-loading administrative tasks, Poa said that DepEd was also looking into giving “non-basic wage” benefits to teachers to augment their salaries. The DepEd spokesperson explained that increasing the basic salary of teachers might affect the manpower of the private education sector so they need to balance it out.

“If we make it too high, it will really affect the private sector because teachers might transfer from private sector to the government. Or, baka hindi kayanin ng private sector tapatan, baka magsara ‘yung private sector (Or, the private sector might not be able to match the salary of the public schools and they might close down),” Poa said.

Poa added the salaries of teachers are covered by the government’s salary standardization law, which “modifies the salary schedule for civilian personnel and authorizes the grant of additional benefits,” including the public school teachers.

“For now, because of the Salary Standardization Law, with the increases imposed since 2019 and I think the last tranche will be in 2023, teachers’ salaries have been rising. To the point na there is data that their salary is actually already better than their counterparts in the private sector,” Poa said in a mix of English and Filipino.

An entry level salary for a public school teacher, with a salary grade 11, is at P25,439. For years, teacher have been fighting for better compensation. When schools in the country shifted to remote learning in 2020, some teachers needed to shoulder from their own pockets the printing cost of learning modules. (READ: Help! These schools need bond paper, printers for students’ learning modules)

Poa offered no details on what kind and how much allowances the DepEd was considering for the teachers. “I don’t want to preempt whatever study on the non-basic wage benefits the DepEd is looking,” he said.

‘Worn out excuse’

Reacting to DepEd’s plan for the teachers’ salaries, ACT said that the agency’s excuse that private schools might close down if they would increase the pay of public school teachers was “old and worn out.”

“Lower salaries of teachers in private schools do not justify the low salaries for public school teachers. This only shows how destitute teachers are in this country, more so in the private sector,” ACT said.

As of 2019, there are over 800,000 public school teachers in the country. –

1 comment

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  1. JC

    There is a software program solution that effectively eliminate an average 3 to 5 hours per day admin tasks done by teachers after school hours and during school breaks. It is used in the Schools Divisions of Catbalogan City, Manila and Northern Samar. Here’s what the software does to automate the teachers’ admin work:
    a. on-time encoding new student registration and class enrollment
    b. automatically create advisory classes and class-subjects
    c. automatically create gradebook and class records for each teacher with enrolled students in each subject-classes
    d. automatically perform computational tasks and data consolidation
    e. all report printing tasks done by a school admin
    f. auto enroll promoted students at end of school-year

    Teachers admin work is reduced to downloading gradebook, entering raw scores in class records and uploading gradebook data.

    Reference schools: Malanday National High school in Marikina and Victorino Mapa High School in Manila implemented the system in 2011.

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Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol covers the Philippine Senate for Rappler.