Department of Education Secretary Leonor Briones once again reiterated that the country’s public school system desperately needs more teachers especially for science and math-related subjects.
Speaking during a recent budget hearing before the House of representatives, Briones said that DepEd is ready to hire 30,000 new teachers – mostly in connection to the newly-created senior high school (SHS) program.
“We need a huge army of teachers. We’ll recruit more,” Briones told members of the House Appropriations Committee. She noted that in DepEd’s proposed P567.56-billion budget for 2017, P15.5 billion will be set aside for the hiring of new teachers.
Briones also emphasized that in vetting applicants for SHS teaching positions, DepEd gives priority to former college instructors who have been displaced by K plus 12 implementation – a practice informally referred to as a “green lane.”
As noted by The Filipino Scribe last year, since there will be no secondary graduates for 2016 and 2017, tertiary institutions will get very few new students during those years – which in turn means a lot of college instructors may not be given teaching loads. In the same article, TFS pointed out that a huge number of these endangered college professors are non-education majors, and hence, non-holders of the appropriate teaching license from the Professional Regulations Commission.
Section 8 of Republic Act 10533 or the K plus 12 law states that faculty members of tertiary institutions can be allowed to teach in their general education or subject specialties in the secondary education as long as they have the appropriate bachelor’s degree and have satisfactorily served as a college capacity on a full-time basis. They will have to pass the licensure exam for teachers within five years after their date of hiring if they wish to be considered for a permanent position.
Section 30.1 of the law’s implementing rules and regulations or IRR affirmed this rule: “The faculty of HEIs and TVIs allowed to teach students of secondary education under Section 8 of the Act, shall be given priority in hiring for the duration of the transition period.”
PS: I’m one of the beneficiaries of DepEd’s so-called “green lane” initiative, where college profs are given priority in hiring despite them not having a teaching professional license provided that they can obtain one within five years.