While the Department of Education (DepEd) is seeking an additional P2.58 billion in 2022 to hire 10,000 teachers, more than 30,000 teaching positions are yet to be filled as of September this year.
For Senator Win Gatchalian, this should push the DepEd to accelerate its hiring process and fill the remaining vacancies.
Based on the Congressional Policy and Budget Research Department’s (CPBRD) agency notes for DepEd’s 2022 budget, 71% of DepEd’s 46,901 total unfilled positions refer to unfilled teaching positions.
This is equivalent to 33,260 unfilled teaching positions and 16,460 or almost half of which are for Teacher I positions.
“The hiring process usually involves six months and involves the DBM and the CSC.”
DepEd officials explained that the hiring process usually involves six months and involves the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and the Civil Service Commission (CSC).
Because of COVID-19 restrictions and the imposition of an alternative work arrangement, the agency also had to work on the hiring process with a limited number of staffers.
“The positions left unfilled could equate to P13 billion in funds that are not being disbursed,” Gatchalian said in a Senate panel hearing on the proposed budget of DepEd and its attached agencies.
“This has been a recurring issue.”
“This has been a recurring issue. I remember some senators, including myself, flagged this also last year and the year before that. We have to, once for all, find ways to reduce the six-month turn-around time somehow,” the veteran legislator stressed.
To help reduce barriers in filling Teacher I positions, Undersecretary Wilfredo Cabral shared that the agency mulls accepting applicants who have no prior experience, similar to other entry-level positions.
For Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, P1.82 billion was allocated for the creation of 10,000 teaching positions.
While DepEd is creating the same number of teaching positions in 2022, the higher P.2.58 billion budget is meant to accommodate the increase in basic salaries under the latest tranche of the Salary Standardization Law.